Glossitis is a medical condition wherein there is an inflammation or infection of the tongue. This article provides some information about the treatment of this condition, along with the causes and common symptoms.
In the medical condition glossitis, swelling and change in the color of the tongue are the first significant signs that can be observed. Furthermore, the tongue also tends to be smoother than before. It has been observed in most cases that the condition is painless, however, it does cause discomfort and uneasiness in the mouth and to the tongue. Moreover, in severe cases it could block the airway due to severe tongue swelling.
This medical condition can be caused due to various factors that are mentioned below.
- Vitamin or Mineral deficiencies
- Viral or Bacterial infections
- Intake of tobacco or tobacco products and hot or spicy food
- Allergy to certain medicines
- People affected by canker sores on tongue or aphthous ulcers are more susceptible to this condition.
- Allergy to toothpaste, mouth fresheners, mouthwash, etc.
- Dry mouth
- Injury or irritation from burns, injuries with dental appliances or due to rough edges of the teeth
Atrophic, median rhomboid, and benign migratory, geometric glossitis, and strawberry tongue are some types of this medical condition. The common symptoms are smooth, tender, sore, and red appearance of the tongue with difficulty in swallowing, chewing, or speaking. Further, in severe cases, a swelling on the tongue is observed. If any of these symptoms are identified, a physical examination and certain blood tests are used as an aid to diagnose this condition.
Different Treatment Options
Median Rhomboid Glossitis
This condition can be identified with a diamond or an oval-shaped mark, which is situated at the upper part of the tongue appearing to be on the middle line. The treatment basically requires one to follow an antifungal regimen wherein a change in the toothbrush and other oral devices may be required, in order to prevent a reinfection.
Benign Migratory Glossitis
This condition is also known as geographic tongue. It can be identified with the help of discolored areas of the taste buds and at times, even cracks might appear on the tongue. This condition would usually arise at the times of an illness, hormonal changes, stress, and on consuming certain kinds of foods that could aggravate the problem. Treatment usually involves the intake of vitamins and zinc supplements that are prescribed by the physician. Furthermore, a steroid ointment may also be prescribed to suppress the symptoms and treat this condition.
This condition is mostly caused due to poor nutrition. The affected person would experience tongue pain while eating hot or spicy foods. This condition if not attended on time, could cause severe tongue pain in the later stages. Antifungal creams and topical applications for the tongue are prescribed by the physician to reduce the inflammation in this case. Apart from this, certain lifestyle changes such as avoiding spicy food and cutting down on the consumption of alcohol, tobacco, etc., and maintaining oral hygiene are some of the things that could prevent this condition.
Ideally, a treatment for any disease would involve treating the causes of the problem, however, in case of such tongue inflammations, the symptoms are treated to reduce the infection or the inflammation. The treatment would also depend on whether the condition is of the acute or chronic type. Also, the prevention of this medical condition is better than the cure. One could avoid the discomfort that such tongue diseases cause by maintaining a good lifestyle, which involves consuming foods and drinks that cannot possibly lead to the condition. On observation of the aforementioned symptoms, one should seek medical help before the condition becomes severe.
Disclaimer: This HealthHearty article is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.