• What is brown tongue and how is it treated?

    What is brown tongue and how is it treated?

    While it’s always alarming to see, a brown tongue generally isn’t a sign of anything serious. Don’t panic, here’s what to know and do if there is a brown coating on your tongue.

    Symptoms and Causes of Brown Tongue

    A healthy tongue is light pink and covered with small nodules (papillae). Typically, a healthy tongue sheds and regenerates continuously. If that doesn’t happen, bacteria and other substances become trapped. This buildup of bacteria can cause your tongue to look brown. Several things can cause this deviation in color. Brown tongue causes include some medications, smoking, drinking a lot of coffee or tea, and poor oral hygiene. If not treated, the nodules can get larger than usual and give the tongue a hairy appearance.

    Treatment Options for Brown Tongue

    Brown tongue is a very treatable condition, and in most cases something you can take care of on your own. Good oral hygiene is imperative. When you brush your teeth, don’t forget to brush your tongue as well. Try switching to a toothbrush designed to include a cheek and tongue cleaner. Use the scraper part to scrub off dead cells.

    If you’re a coffee drinker, or drink plenty of water after. If you’re a smoker, it is never too late to cut down and quit. Drink more water for increased hydration and eat a healthy diet. All of these things will help remove most of the discoloration. Additionally, you can swish with antimicrobial mouthwash or warm salt water to reduce the chance of bacterial growth.

    While it may be alarming to look in your mouth and see a brown tongue, know it’s very curable. Having a good oral health routine is vital. If you’re concerned or don’t see improvement within a few days, contact your local Brookwater dentist to book an appointment for further treatment.

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