Manual Black Tongue

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  5. Black Hairy Tongue Causes, Symptoms, and Treatments

Your tongue is covered in hundreds of tiny bumps called papillae. But when dead skin cells start to collect on their tips, they start to look longer. These long papillae are easily stained by bacteria and other substances, giving your tongue a black, furry appearance. When you have a buildup of dead skin cells on your tongue, bacteria and other substances can get caught in them. This can make your tongue look dark brown or black.

In most cases, regularly brushing your tongue with a toothbrush should help to remove dead skin cells and stains within a few days. If you suspect that a medication or prescribed liquid diet is causing your black tongue, make an appointment with your doctor. They might be able to adjust your dosage or prescribe an antifungal or antibacterial medication to help manage yeast or bacteria in your mouth.


black tongue

For stubborn elongated papillae, a doctor can remove them using carbon dioxide laser burning or electrodessication, which simultaneously cuts and seals the papillae. Having a black tongue is harmless and temporary. With a few lifestyle changes, you should see quick improvement. You may need to adjust your medication dosage or have the elongated papillae removed. Tongue scraping is a fast way to remove extra particles - including the ones that cause bad breath - from the top of the tongue.

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You may be asked questions such as: When did you first notice the problem? Have you had similar symptoms before? Do you have pain, swelling, breathing problems, or difficulty swallowing? Are there problems with speaking or moving the tongue? Have you noticed changes in taste? Do you have a tongue tremor? What makes the problem worse? What have you tried that helps?

Do you wear dentures? Are there problems with the teeth, gums, lips, or throat?


Does the tongue bleed? Do you have a rash or fever? Do you have allergies? What medicines do you take?


Do you use tobacco products or drink alcohol? You may need blood tests or a biopsy to check for other conditions. Treatment depends on the cause of the tongue problem. Possible treatments include: If nerve damage has caused a tongue movement problem, the condition must be treated.

Therapy may be needed to improve speech and swallowing. Ankyloglossia may not need to be treated, unless you have speech or swallowing problems. Surgery to release the tongue can relieve the problem. Medicine may be prescribed for mouth ulcers, leukoplakia, oral cancer, and other mouth sores. Anti-inflammatory medicines may be prescribed for glossititis and geographic tongue. Alternative Names. Black hairy tongue Black hairy tongue. Tongue Disorders Read more. Try one of our products for fast acting pain relief. All Rights Reserved. You are viewing the US English site.

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Black Tongue

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Back Oral Care Products. By Colgate Brand. Ingredient Information. Causes of Tongue Discoloration Most of the causes of this problem are fairly simple and easy to address. These include: Poor oral hygiene habits. Xerostomia , also known as or dry mouth, caused by insufficient production of saliva for effective oral cleansing purposes.

Smoking, which can cause additional bacteria to thrive in the warm, moist environment. Eating or drinking mainly soft foods, which isn't helpful in the oral cleansing process. Use of antibiotics and other medications that promote the development of fungi, yeast and bacteria. Getting Diagnosed Treating a black, hairy tongue problem begins with a visit to your dental practitioner, so they can determine the state of your overall oral health. Treatment Options Your dentist will likely recommend stepping up your daily brushing to between two and three times daily, using a toothbrush designed to clean the surface of the tongue.

Preventive Care Black tongue problems are not only reversible, but you can usually prevent them by taking some basic measures. More Articles You May Like.

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Although everyone's likely to get a canker sore now and again, people with recurrent aphthous stomatitis get them regularly. Learn more about it. The sublingual papilla is a small piece of tissue found under the tongue.

Black Hairy Tongue Causes, Symptoms, and Treatments

Learn how it relates to your salivary structures. If you notice a gum boil or a pus-filled bump inside your mouth, it might be an abscess. Learn more about dental abscesses and how they are treated. Symptoms include white spots inside the mouth or on the tongue, sore throat and difficulty swallowing. They develop in the mouth on the tongue, inside cheek areas, lips, gum line and throat area.