Quick Answer: What Is Your Tongue Telling You?

When should I worry about my tongue?

Make an appointment with your doctor if your symptoms do not improve after a week, if they get worse, or if your bumps keep recurring.

You should also make an appointment with your doctor or dentist if you experience patches in your mouth that are red or white in colour, or sores or lumps, especially if they feel hard..

What does early signs of tongue cancer look like?

What are the symptoms?a red or white patch on your tongue that persists.a tongue ulcer that persists.pain when swallowing.mouth numbness.a sore throat that persists.bleeding from your tongue with no apparent cause.a lump on your tongue that persists.

Is a white tongue a sign of dehydration?

Whitening of the tongue can occur when there is a buildup or coating of bacteria and debris on the surface of the tongue due to mild dehydration, illness (when there is less use of the tongue for talking or eating), or dryness of the mouth.

What causes bacterial infection on tongue?

White tongue is usually caused when bacteria, debris (like food and sugar) and dead cells get trapped between the papillae on the surface of your tongue. These string-like papillae then grow large and swell up, sometimes becoming inflamed. This creates the white patch you see on your tongue.

Who treats tongue problems?

For tongue lesions such as changes in color, growths, or texture changes, an oral surgeon or an otolaryngologist (ear, nose and throat specialist, also known as an ENT specialist) can evaluate the area, perform a biopsy, and follow up or refer for appropriate treatment such as surgery or medication.

Does a white tongue mean your sick?

A white tongue is usually nothing to worry about. But on rare occasions, this symptom can warn of a more serious condition like an infection or early cancer. That’s why it’s important to keep an eye on your other symptoms, and call your doctor if the white coating doesn’t go away in a couple of weeks.

Where does tongue cancer usually start?

Several types of cancer can affect the tongue, but tongue cancer most often begins in the thin, flat squamous cells that line the surface of the tongue.

What does a line down middle of tongue mean?

Fissured tongue is a benign condition affecting the top surface of the tongue. A normal tongue is relatively flat across its length. A fissured tongue is marked by a deep, prominent groove in the middle. There may also be small furrows or fissures across the surface, causing the tongue to have a wrinkled appearance.

What happens when your vitamin b12 is low?

Having vitamin B12 deficiency means that your body does not have enough of this vitamin. You need B12 to make red blood cells, which carry oxygen through your body. Not having enough B12 can lead to anemia, which means your body does not have enough red blood cells to do the job. This can make you feel weak and tired.

What color should my tongue be?

A healthy tongue is usually pink with a whitish coating on the top and sides. When changes in the color, shape, size, or texture of the tongue last longer than a few days, it is likely a good idea to see a doctor.

What can be mistaken for oral thrush?

Hairy leukoplakia causes fuzzy, white patches that resemble folds or ridges, usually on the sides of your tongue. It’s often mistaken for oral thrush, an infection marked by creamy white patches that can be wiped away, which is also common in people with a weakened immune system.

What does a coated tongue mean?

By Mayo Clinic Staff. White tongue is the result of an overgrowth and swelling of the fingerlike projections (papillae) on the surface of your tongue. The appearance of a white coating is caused by debris, bacteria and dead cells getting lodged between the enlarged and sometimes inflamed papillae.

What diseases affect the tongue?

A swollen tongue may be a symptom of a disease or medical condition, such as:Down syndrome.tongue cancer.Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome.an overactive thyroid.leukemia.strep throat.anemia.

What does cancer look like on your tongue?

Tongue cancer develops at the front of the tongue, while cancer at the back of the tongue is known as oropharyngeal cancer. Symptoms of oral cancer can include: red or red and white patches (oral leukoplakia) that appear on the lining of the mouth or the tongue. sores and mouth ulcers that will not heal.

Can b12 deficiency cause burning tongue?

Additionally, some people with a B12 deficiency may experience other oral symptoms, such as mouth ulcers, feelings of pins and needles in the tongue or a burning and itching sensation in the mouth ( 15 , 17 ). Summary: An early sign of B12 deficiency may be a red and swollen tongue.

Does salt water get rid of white tongue?

Salt has antiseptic, cleansing, and soothing properties. This makes it a common home remedy for many oral problems. Rinsing your mouth with saltwater could help relieve symptoms of oral thrush.

Why do acupuncturists look at your tongue?

Looking at the tongue and feeling the pulse are often considered the most important. When looking at a patient, an acupuncturist is observing the general appearance, physical shape, facial color and features, and the tongue—all as insights into the state of health from vibrancy to illness.

What does a b12 deficiency tongue look like?

Smooth Tongue B12 deficiency will also make the tongue sore and beefy-red in color. Glossitis, by causing swelling of the tongue, may also cause the tongue to appear smooth.

What does HPV look like on the tongue?

When HPV affects your mouth, it can cause several types of bumps inside your mouth, including on your tongue. One of the more common growths, called squamous cell papilloma, can look a lot like a skin tag on your tongue. These flesh-colored bumps are noncancerous warts.

What does a healthy tongue look like?

First, it’s important to gain a sense of what’s normal for a tongue. A healthy tongue is typically pink in color, but it can still vary slightly in dark and light shades. Your tongue also has small nodules on the top and bottom. These are called papillae.

How do you cure a white tongue?

Simple ways you can treat white tongue include:Drinking more water, up to eight glasses a day.Brushing your teeth using a soft toothbrush.Using a mild fluoride toothpaste —one that doesn’t have sodium lauryl sulfate (a detergent) listed as an ingredient.Using fluoride mouthwash.More items…•