Geographic Tongue and Other Conditions by Dr. Fondriest

What is geographic tongue?

This oral health condition reflects its name by showing map-like lesions on the tongue. Tastebuds create “island-shaped” red sores where papillae are missing. While some people experience discomfort with geographical tongue, it has not been linked to any serious health conditions. The exact cause of geographic tongue is still unknown but is likely to have an autoimmune link.

What causes hairy tongue?

Dry mouth, antibiotics, and bacterial infections are common causes of furry, or hairy tongue. During sleep, certain tastebuds grow longer, creating a hairy feel and look to the surface of your tongue. These tastebuds, called filiform papillae are made from a substance found in hair, called keratin, giving these tastebuds their follicle qualities.

Why is my tongue pale instead of pink?

Iron deficiencies limit the oxygen levels that keep soft tissues in the mouth a healthy shade of pink. An iron deficiency, also called anemia, can be the result of hemorrhoids, stomach ulcers, or some menstrual complications to name a few. If you notice your tongue or the inside of your cheeks appear pale, supplemental iron pills may not only restore a healthy color but also increase your energy.

Why are my tongue ulcers not healing?

Sores or lesions on your tongue can range from the result of biting your tongue, to signs of oral cancer. If you notice white splotchy sores that do not heal in seven to ten days, have your mouth checked by our Lake Forest dentist as soon as possible. Prolonged mouth sores or canker sores are often a sign or oral cancer. A routine dental checkup with Chicago dentist, Dr. Fondriest can diagnose your condition to determine if the cells are cancerous. 

Comprehensive Dentistry in Chicago

From regular dental cleanings to high-end cosmetic dentistry services, we offer a variety of procedures to give you a healthy, beautiful smile. To schedule an appointment, contact our Lake Forest dentist office at (847)234-0517. We can offer a wide range of dental treatments for patients from Grayslake, Barrington, Lake Forest, Winnetka, Highland Park, North Shore, and Chicago.