When it comes to oral health, our teeth and gums shouldn’t be our only concern. Your tongue is also a key component of your oral health and it shouldn’t be ignored! It’s important to check your tongue regularly and pay attention to any bumps, lumps, or rashes that you might get on your tongue, as any of these could indicate something more serious than a canker sore. While most tongue problems are often treatable, some can signal more serious conditions. Something to look out for? Changes in color of the tongue!
A white tongue can be a sign of leukoplakia, oral thrush, and oral lichen planus. These conditions often come from tobacco use and can be resolved either with medication or on its own. Your dentist can usually confirm whether or not medication is needed and what the best treatment plan would be.
A red or strawberry tongue could be a sign of a vitamin deficiency, a geographic tongue, Kawasaki syndrome or scarlet fever. If you have a strawberry tongue and a high fever, head to a doctor immediately to start an antibiotic treatment.
Surprisingly enough, a black tongue is usually harmless but can be pretty gross to look at. Usually, this happens when the papillae that is naturally on your tongue become excessively long, rather than being worn down by daily activities. When they grow, they look dark and hair-like.
If you notice any abnormalities on your tongue, whether it is a strange color, a bump, or a rash, visit a dentist or doctor to figure out what is going on.