The color, texture and humidity of the tongue can be of a big importance for the discovery of overall health of the organism. If you notice that something on your tongue has changed, do not ignore it. The tongue is made of a group of muscles that enable us to feel the taste of food and drinks, to swallow and to talk.
Your tongue is rich with blood arteries, and thanks to the constant flow of saliva, it gets constantly cleaned out, and harmful bacteria that grow out within our mouths are removed. With the examination of someone’s tongue it is possible to discover a health issue, even if the person might look completely healthy and well.
If your tongue changes color, if it is swelled, solid, and painful or if it has sort of strange looking spots, it means that something within your body is not alright. It could be a deficit of a vitamin, but also serious health problems that require doctor’s help.
1. If your tongue is black
Small dots on the surface of the tongue can sometimes have black color because of accumulation of bacteria and fungi. Also, the color of the surface of the tongue can change because of some food, drinks and cigarettes. The reason to it is mostly bad hygiene of the mouth. This condition of the tongue is not dangerous, but it is not pretty to look at.
Sometimes, some antibiotics and mouthwash could be responsible for black tongue. It could be a case of dehydration of the body or too much coffee. If it lasts more than ten days, you should talk to your doctor.
2. The tongue is yellow
Like with the black tongue, yellow tongue is also a result of accumulated bacteria. Besides, the spots can be inflamed if the mouth is too dry, meaning if the body lacks water, if you breathe through your mouth (instead of using your nose), if the body temperature is higher, too much cigarettes smoke in touch with the tongue, etc. The solution is careful hygiene of the mouth, more water, pilling of the tongue.
3. White surface
There can be many causes. It can be because of dehydration, but also because of oral candidiasis. It is an infection of the mucosa of the mouth cavity of some fungi from the family of Candida that most commonly attacks people with a weaker immune system. It can also appear in patients that take strong antibiotics.
White tongue can also appear with a condition that causes creation of small spots within the mouth cavity. It is a case of lesions that can sometimes be a beginning of carcinoma, according to some experts.
4. “Strawberry” tongue
It is a tongue where the buds responsible for taste can swell and it seems like they have a smooth surface like the seeds of a strawberry. Experts warn that if your tongue is of bright red color, and you have a high body temperature – you should immediately visit a doctor. The tongue can be alike a strawberry because of few reasons. One of them is a shortage of vitamin B12 and folic acid.
The cause can be a streptococci infection which is responsible for fever and the advice is to immediately seek doctor help. There is one more disease that could cause strawberry like tongue – Kawasaki disease that is more common in children younger than five years. It is a disorder which characterizes inflammation of blood arteries in the whole body. This disease is also followed by higher body temperature, so a doctor’s visit is necessary.
5. Light brown spots
If light or dark brown spots appear on the surface of your tongue, you should most certainly visit a doctor because the cause can be a sort of skin cancer – melanoma.
6. Appearance of lumps or pain
These are the main causes for appearance of lumps or pain in any part of the tongue:
- Diabetes and anemic blood can be responsible for tongue inflammation
- Smoking can irritate the tongue and cause pain
- It can be either from burns by hot food, or you could have bit your tongue when chewing
- Some women feel burning on the surface post menopause
- Stress could cause growth of ulcers on the tongue
- Oral carcinoma is most common in smokers and alcoholics – go to a doctor if the pain lasts more than two weeks
- Cracks or small cuts on the surface can cause fungi infections
7. Numbness or tingling feeling
Numbness of the tongue mostly happens because of damaged nerves. It can appear after a dentist procedure, but also after a stroke, according to The Earth Child.