Black Spot On Tongue Pictures

Black Spot On Tongue Pictures
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Many readers are interested in the following topic: Black Spots on the Tongue: Why There’s a Black Dot on Your Tongue and How to Get Rid of It. We are happy to note, that our authors have already studied the modern research about the topic you are interested in. Based on the information provided in the latest medical digests, modern research and surveys, we provide extensive answer. Keep reading to find out more.

The black spots on your tongue may simply be the result of an allergic reaction.

Black tongue: Causes and what to do

Black tongue is a harmless and temporary oral condition. Despite its name, black tongue does not always cause the tongue to turn black. In fact, the primary symptom is that the tongue appears hairy with visible growths.

Black tongue usually occurs due to a buildup of the protein keratin on the tongue’s surface.

However, an overgrowth of bacteria or fungi within the mouth can also cause the tongue to appear black. Black tongue is temporary and tends to clear up without treatment.

Read on to find out more about the causes of black tongue. We also outline some home remedies and treatments that may help clear black tongue and prevent its recurrence.

There are two main types of black tongue: black hairy tongue and pseudo-black hairy tongue. Each has a different cause, which the following sections will cover in more detail.

Black hairy tongue

Share on Pinterest A buildup of the protein keratin may cause a black tongue.

The skin of the tongue is covered in a protein called keratin.

Normally, keratin sheds when skin cells shed. Sometimes, however, keratin accumulates on the tongue. This can cause the tongue to look black and discolored. Doctors refer to this as black hairy tongue.

The following factors increase the risk of keratin building up on the tongue:

  • poor oral hygiene, which may result from not regularly brushing or scraping the tongue
  • drinking coffee or black tea
  • smoking and other forms of tobacco use
  • recent or prolonged use of antibiotics
  • having a weak immune system due to a medical condition, such as diabetes or HIV
  • a condition called trigeminal neuralgia, which affects the facial nerves
  • radiation therapy

Pseudo-black hairy tongue

This refers to a black, furry tongue resulting from a fungal infection, a bacterial infection, or another oral disease.

Black tongue may cause different symptoms depending on its underlying cause.

Black tongue does not always cause the tongue to turn black. Instead, the primary symptom is that the tongue looks hairy due to the presence of long, thread-like growths.

People with black tongue usually do not experience any other symptoms. However, some people may experience the following:

  • a discolored tongue that is black, brown, gray, or yellow
  • a tongue that feels fuzzy or sticky
  • a bad taste in the mouth
  • bad breath
  • a burning sensation
  • gagging

Black tongue is harmless . However, it can indicate that a person is at risk of developing an oral health issue.

Maintaining good oral hygiene can help clear black tongue. People can try:

  • regularly brushing the tongue with a fluoride toothpaste
  • using a tongue scraper to remove plaque, bacteria, and other debris from the tongue
  • rinsing the mouth with warm salt water to improve cleanliness and reduce bad tastes and odors
  • brushing the tongue after every meal, and not eating after brushing at night
  • applying baking soda or hydrogen peroxide to the tongue
  • drinking plenty of water to help keep the mouth clean
  • eating more raw fruits and vegetables, which can help clean the tongue

If black tongue does not clear on its own within a few days, a person should seek medical treatment.

A doctor or dentist may recommend the following treatments for a person who presents with a black tongue:

  • Antibiotics: These medications will help treat bacterial infections of the tongue.
  • Switching medications: A person who develops black tongue as a result of antibiotic use may need to switch antibiotics.
  • Antifungal treatment: These medications can help treat fungal causes of a black tongue.
  • Other medications or supplements:Anecdotal evidence suggests that certain medications — including salicylic acid, retinoids, and B complex vitamins — may ease symptoms of black tongue. However, people should not use these treatments without first talking to a doctor.
  • Surgical treatment: If other treatment options do not work, a doctor or dentist can perform a procedure to remove the long, thread-like growths on the tongue. This clipping procedure is safe and effective. However, black tongue may return following the procedure.

Black tongue can be alarming, but it is not a medical emergency.

It is safe to wait a few days and try some home remedies before seeing a doctor or dentist. However, people should seek help from a healthcare provider if their symptoms persist or worsen.

Sometimes, black tongue occurs with other symptoms of an oral health problem, such as:

  • gum pain
  • mouth infection
  • tooth infection
  • a broken tooth

People should see a doctor or dentist as soon as possible if their black tongue is accompanied by any of the following symptoms:

  • pain
  • swelling
  • visibly damaged teeth

Noticing a black tongue can be alarming, but it is not a sign of a serious illness. In some cases, however, it can indicate that a person needs to improve their oral hygiene.

It is generally safe to wait a few days before seeking treatment for a black tongue. In the meantime, people can try home remedies such as tongue brushing or scraping and saltwater rinses.

A person should see a doctor or dentist if their symptoms persist or worsen, or if they are accompanied by pain and swelling. The doctor or dentist will work to diagnose the cause of black tongue and will provide appropriate medical treatments.

Last medically reviewed on November 29, 2019

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Medical News Today has strict sourcing guidelines and draws only from peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions, and medical journals and associations. We avoid using tertiary references. We link primary sources — including studies, scientific references, and statistics — within each article and also list them in the resources section at the bottom of our articles. You can learn more about how we ensure our content is accurate and current by reading our editorial policy.

  • Black hairy tongue. (2016).
  • Gurvits, G. E., & Tan, A. (2014). Black hairy tongue syndrome.
  • Radfar, L. (2015). Hairy tongue.
  • Yi-Chun, L. (2018). Black tongue.

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Medically reviewed by Deborah Weatherspoon, Ph.D., MSN — By Zawn Villines on November 29, 2019

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© 2023 Healthline Media UK Ltd, Brighton, UK. All rights reserved. MNT is the registered trade mark of Healthline Media. Any medical information published on this website is not intended as a substitute for informed medical advice and you should not take any action before consulting with a healthcare professional. See additional information.

Black Spots on the Tongue: Why There’s a Black Dot on Your Tongue and How to Get Rid of It

Disclaimer: Results are not guaranteed*** and may vary from person to person***.

We tend to worry when we see something unexpected on our body. It’s hard to blame us, really, as seemingly every time we read a news article about something that may show up on the skin or in the mouth, it’s the harbinger of something horrible. But is that always the case? What about black spots on the tongue? Does it mean that your tongue is going to fall out, or is that black dot on the tongue nothing to stress over? In this article, we’ll explore black dots on the tongue and what they mean to you and your health. From black spot in tongue causes to black spots on tongue treatment, we’ll cover everything you need to know about these tiny black spots on the tongue.

What Are Black Spots on the Tongue?

The black spots on your tongue can actually be a couple of different things. They may be small, tiny bumps, or they could be larger discoloration over a broad patch of the tongue. It can even develop into an almost hairy texture. As you may surmise, along with the different types of spots, there are different types of causes of black spots on the tongue.

What Causes Black Spots on the Tongue?

What causes black spots on your tongue? As mentioned, the various forms of black spots result from the various causes. That being said, some causes are slightly more common than others.

1. Tongue Cancer

The most severe of the causes, tongue cancer can first physically manifest as black spots or bumps on the tongue.

2. Fungal Infection

Black spots on the tongue can often be the result of a fungal infection. The black spots will appear almost like mold forming on the tongue.

3. Tongue Piercing

Tongue piercings can also cause black spots to appear on your tongue. Essentially, the piercing disrupts the natural skin pigmentation of the tongue. With piercings, the black spots are temporary.

4. Hyperpigmentation

Linked to conditions like anemia, vitamin B deficiency, and bad oral hygiene, hyperpigmentation may also lead to black spots over the dorsum of the tongue. The interesting thing about hyperpigmentation is that, while there is an association between the discolorations and certain afflictions, doctors and scientists have not determined exactly what causes it.

5. Hairy Tongue

A unique type of black spot on the tongue, hairy tongue appears as small, black, furry-like patches on the tongue. It can be caused by bad oral hygiene, smoking, and excessive drinking of alcohol.

6. Repetitive Injury

If you keep biting or injuring the same area of the tongue, you may experience discoloration. Much like the tongue piercing, disruption to the pigment can be temporary.

7. Allergies

The black spots on your tongue may simply be the result of an allergic reaction.

8. Reaction to Medications

There are a number of medications that may cause a black spot or bump on the tongue reaction. These drugs are usually antidepressants, some asthma drugs, and drugs that contain bismuth subsalicylate.

9. Pregnancy

Believe it or not, pregnancy may cause black spots on your tongue. This is usually due to the large hormone shift within a woman’s body during this time.

Now that you’ve seen many causes of black spots on the tongue, we can start to discuss the possible treatment courses to take in order to get rid of them.

How to Remove Black Spots on Tongue

There’s a good chance that the second thing you’ll want to know about the black spots on your tongue is how to get rid of them. Is there a black spots on the tongue cure? How do you remove black spots on tongue naturally? The answers to these questions depend to what is causing the black spot in the first place. We’ll go over some of those “black spot cures” below.

1. Don’t Do Anything/Time

In the case of pregnancy, for example, once your pregnancy is over and your hormones return to normal, the black spots should disappear. Similarly, causes like injury and tongue piercing just need a little bit of time to heal. As long as the tongue isn’t re-injured, the black spots should disappear on their own.

2. Improve Your Oral Hygiene

A number of the causes of black spots can result, in part, from poor oral hygiene. Improve your oral hygiene (regular brushing, visits to the dentist for a cleaning, etc.) and you may find that the black spots begin to fade away. This is also a great preventative measure, allowing you to avoid the appearance of black spots completely.

3. See a Doctor

If it does not look like your particular black spots can be easily treated, it’s time to go see a doctor. Some of the causes like a fungal infection or hairy tongue can be stubborn and may require antibiotics to help clean your mouth and get rid of the black spots. The antibiotics can also help prevent those issues from becoming more serious. If there is a chance that it’s tongue cancer, then it’s something you want to get in front of as soon as possible. Early diagnosis can help determine an appropriate cancer treatment and prevent the further damage or spread of cancer. It is better to get it checked out and treated than to possibly lose your tongue.

Keep an Eye on Black Spots

Black spots on your tongue are an odd health issue. For the most part, they are harmless and don’t even cause pain. Sure, some black spots like hairy tongue can be downright gross to look at and deal with, but the solution may be something as simple as brushing your teeth. However, if the spots are persistent, a trip to the doctor isn’t a bad idea. It may be nothing and you may go home with a prescription for some antibiotics as a precaution. But, on the off chance that it’s an out-of-control infection or cancer, it’s best to be sure so you can get treatment and deal with the issue early.

Also Read:

  • Pimple on Your Tongue: Treating Your Lie Bumps
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  • Tongue Color: Everything You Need to Know about Tongue Health
  • Burning Mouth Syndrome: Why Is Your Tongue on Fire?
  • Bumps on Back of Tongue: Causes and Natural Treatments