The probable causes of red tongue spots are geographic tongue, canker sore, glossitis, and nutritional deficiency. Read the article to understand detailed information regarding this condition.
The tongue is a muscular mass of tissues responsible for varied functions. Covered by mucous membrane, it aids in sensing taste, mastication, swallowing, digestion, and speaking. Believe it or not, more than 9000 taste buds are present in a human tongue. They are present between small papillae (or bumps) in the upper surface. A healthy tongue appears pinkish to slight reddish in color, remains moist with a thin layer of coating, and its movement is unrestricted. Changes in its sensation, color, and overall appearance may be a sign of underlying medical problems. Even in traditional Chinese medicine, it is mentioned that its appearance can tell a lot about the general health of a person, in terms of allergic responses, poor circulation, vitamin deficiency, and infections. For instance, pale color signifies cold body temperature and blood deficiency, whereas red color denotes excess heat. Thus, red tongue spots can result due to several medical problems.
This problem is manifested with or without painful symptoms. Accordingly, diagnosis of the problem is done. For reasons mentioned before, physicians examine the tongue of a patient for medical assessment. Discussed below are some of the probable causes of these red spots.
- Geographic Tongue: The exact cause of this harmless problem in not known as yet. Except for discolored patches, this condition is asymptomatic in most cases. A few patients complain of sores, pain, and discomfort symptoms after having very hot or spicy foods.
- Glossitis: It is a common condition, characterized by red patches. The main cause behind this is trauma, fungal infection, bacterial infection, and exposure to harsh chemicals. In addition to red spots, other symptoms include pain, open sores, loss of taste, bad breadth, and sensitivity to hot or spicy foods.
- Canker Sores: In case of outbreaks like red bumps or red blisters, the reason is probably canker sores. Caused by viral infection, they are very painful and develop without any apparent reason. Its symptoms are more severe under stress. However, they heal with time, and do not require specific medical treatments.
- Nutritional Deficiency: When an individual continues on a poor diet for a long period, chances are high that he or she suffers from nutrient deficiency symptoms. Tongue problem due to lack of nutrients is manifested, not in spots or patches, rather the whole surface becomes red in color. Supplementing the diet with iron, folic acid, bioflavonoids, and vitamin B helps in combating this inflammation.
Usually, this condition improves on its own without therapeutic intervention. However, follow correct oral and dental hygiene tips to avoid exacerbation of the problem. In addition to brushing, indulge in using a scraper at least two times per day. This helps in getting rid of harmful microbes and other deposition on the tongue surface. If at all the spots persist for an extended period, consult and seek advice from a qualified doctor.
Disclaimer: This article is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.