If you stick out your tongue at Dr. Izaz Khan of the Ikon Dental Group, you do not have to worry that he thinks you are being rude. In fact, he wants you to stick out your tongue so he can look at the color, texture and patterns which could adversely affect your oral health and overall health.

Brush Your Tongue to Prevent Bad Breath

You should brush your tongue, as you should brush your teeth, at least twice per day. You can buy a tongue scraper, but brushing your tongue with your toothbrush after brushing your teeth is okay. Your tongue has a lot of points and channels, it has more bacteria than your teeth, and the bacteria likes to stay on your tongue and grow.

Do you have bad breath? One of the main reasons for this predicament is bacteria on the tongue.

Thrush and a “Hairy” Tongue

When Dr. Khan looks at your tongue, he could see white spots. This could indicate that you have thrush, a fungal infection. He could also see a “hairy” tongue covered in black, brown, or white fur. The culprits for hairy mouth could be smoking, medications, poor oral hygiene, and certain foods or drinks. Hairy tongue should go away once you follow a proper oral hygiene routine.

A Red Tongue Is Not a Good Sign

Pain in your mouth with a red tongue resembling a strawberry could mean your body has drug or food allergies or a vitamin B3 deficiency. It could also signify strep throat, or a rare blood vessel disorder called Kawasaki disease.

Your Mouth Is Burning

You could be suffering from burning mouth syndrome if your tongue has a bitter, metallic taste and feels burned. Burning mouth syndrome can also be caused by nerves problems in the tongue, diabetes, acid reflux, infections, and dry mouth.

Tongue Grooves Run Deep

Your tongue forms deep grooves as you get older. A grooved tongue does not usually cause any problems. Brushing your tongue twice a day will help to remove food and bacteria.

Painful Canker Sores

Canker sores are usually temporary and are likely to appear under the tongue as tiny, painful, red bumps. If these bumps will not go away, they should be checked by your dentist or doctor.

Oral Cancer – Potential Signs

Your tongue is a sensitive muscle with numerous nerve endings. It can get sore after accidentally biting it, and sometimes infections or medications cause your tongue to become painful. If you have a lump, or red or white spots, pain in the tongue could be an indicator of oral cancer.

While most conditions of the tongue are harmless, it is important to recognize signs of cancer. If symptoms of sores that will not heal, lumps, difficulty chewing and swallowing and tongue pain last for more than two weeks, see your dentist or doctor.

Schedule an Appointment

To schedule an appointment with Dr. Khan, call IKON Dental Group at (860) 400-00196.