You need your tongue to talk, to swallow, and to taste food. When this strong muscle is healthy, it should have a pink color and it’s covered with papillae, which are small nodules. When some dead cells, bacteria, and food parts accumulate between the inflamed papillae, you may notice a white coating on your tongue. It’s quite a common problem, which isn’t serious, but it may lead to a bitter taste in your mouth or it can cause bad breath. Learn more about the causes of white tongue, how to get rid of the problem and how to prevent it in the future.
What Are The Causes of White Tongue
White tongue is mainly caused because of the inflammation of the papillae, which cover your tongue. The inflammation usually appears as a result of dehydration or dry mouth, smoking, fever, and drinking too much of alcohol.
Your diet is important too as food which is rich in sugar or highly acidic foods may also cause a white coating on your tongue. Not taking proper care of your oral hygiene may lead to the problem as well.
Another common cause of white tongue is oral thrush. You should mainly suspect it if a white coating on your tongue appeared after taking antibiotics as oral thrush is a kind of a yeast infection. Apart from a white coating, you may also suffer from a burning sensation in your tongue and the corner of your mouth may be irritated and painful.
A white tongue is usually harmless and you can easily get rid of it by drinking a lot of water and other fluids which don’t contain sugar. You may also try various home methods, which will help you quickly eliminate the problem.
However, you need to be aware that very rarely a white coating on your tongue may be a symptom of some more serious diseases. One of such conditions is known as leukoplakia. It happens when your organism produces too many cells and proteins, which you can see as white patches on your tongue. The condition is rarely dangerous, but it should be controlled by a doctor as there are cases when it’s cancerous.
Oral lichen planus is an immune type of a condition which may cause a white coating on the tongue, but also a burning feeling or pain. Syphilis may cause a white tongue too. It’s a condition which is transmitted sexually so if you know that you might have got it, consult your doctor as you will have to take antibiotics to get rid of it.
A condition which may be mistaken with a white tongue is known as geographic tongue. It occurs in form of thick, white layers of coating on your tongue. Moreover, spicy or salty food may cause some pain too. A white tongue may also be one of the symptoms of some very serious and life-threatening conditions, such as HIV and mouth or tongue cancer.
How to Get Rid of White Tongue: Best Home Remedies
If a white tongue is not a symptom of any disease that requires a medical treatment, you can quickly get rid of it thanks to several natural, home remedies.
1. Aloe Vera Juice
Aloe Vera has wonderful anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antimicrobial properties. Therefore, it can successfully eliminate the problem of a white tongue, especially if it also causes bad breath. In fact, Aloe Vera is often used in treating various oral conditions.
It’s also very easy to use as you only need two tablespoons of Aloe Vera juice per time. Swish one tablespoon for a few minutes in your mouth and spit it out. Then drink the other tablespoon of the juice. You can follow this procedure a few times a day for around two weeks. After that time the problem of a white tongue should be eliminated.
2. Hydrogen Peroxide
Hydrogen Peroxide is a powerful substance with wonderful antibacterial qualities. Thus, it can effectively kill the bacteria that have built up on your tongue. Additionally, it will have a positive effect on your teeth too as it will make them whiter. There are different hydrogen peroxide solutions available, but for oral cavity, three percent would be the best option.
In order to prepare a remedial mouthwash, you need one part of hydrogen peroxide and two parts of water. Soak a toothbrush in this mixture and scrape the tongue, but be gentle. Then thoroughly rinse your mouth with warm water. You can follow the procedure even four times a day. Remember, though, not to swallow hydrogen peroxide.
3. Oil Pulling
The technique of oil pulling comes from an old Ayurvedic tradition and it can help you get rid of a white tongue especially if it’s caused by oral thrush or other yeast infections. What’s more, oil pulling may also help you clean your organism from toxins.