Black Spots On Tongue – Causes, Home Remedies And Prevention Tips

Black Spots On Tongue

The tongue is known to be an excellent indicator of overall well-being and good health too. It is the condition of the tongue that would indicate the finesse of health or the lack of it. This is why; today we would like to talk about hairy tongue or the Black Spots on the Tongue, also known as Black Tongue. Worry not if you have the symptoms of the same. If you do, there are a few home remedies and lifestyle changes that you can make to avoid this from happening. Please read on and be well-informed!

What is Black Spots on Tongue?

Black spots on tongue start out as a small spot and grow to coat most of the top of the tongue. It’s a buildup of dead skin cells that fail to shed as they should. This could be due to poor oral habits, medications, or tobacco use.

Let’s discuss the types of black spots on the tongue people have. This would make it easier to diagnose and understand the cause. Let’s take a look!

What are the types of Black Spots on Tongue?

Black spots on the tongue

It is harmless though, and the issue of tongue hyperpigmentation happens when the melanocytes are found in abundance.

However, there are chances of you suffering from melanoma, which is a cancer type, and hence should check with a specialist on the same. Melanoma happens when the UV rays of the sun penetrate into the mouth. This is mostly seen in people above the age of forty, women especially. Melanoma is black or brown and can be other colors too- purple, pink or red too.

Black spots on side of tongue

In some cases, there are dark marks and spots on the side of the tongue and not on the tongue. This is small or big and on one side only, either the left or the right or maybe on both sides- rare. These are mostly causes by dental reasons or maybe because of the appliances you use to clean the tongue with.

However, it is a cause of concern and you should check with your doctor to know if you suffer from adrenocortical insufficiency or not.

It could also be malignant melanoma, and this would grow in size as time passes by. Check with the doctor if you see this, especially if you are a smoker or a heavy alcohol consumer too.

Black spot under tongue

If you notice black spots under the tongue, remember, it could be because you have been consuming too much alcohol or tobacco, or chewing betel nut and tobacco stuff.
There could also be bacterial overgrowth under the tongue that has been ignored for long.

Some who pierce their tongues too suffer from this

Those who incessantly bite their tongues as well would suffer from this.

In some cases, it has been noticed that the dilated blood vessels especially if dark blue or purplish in color could be the reason for the same. The size would vary from one to the next- tiny to large.

Small black spot on tongue (little, Tiny)

If you have tiny black spots on the tongue, there could be no specific cause or reason for that happening. The reasons above discussed would be the same for this one as well. They are harmless and painless; however, we would advise checking with a specialist to determine if it could be melanoma or hyper-pigmentation. In some cases, it could hurt too.

Black spots on tip of tongue

Should you notice the black spots as tiny and patchy, or on the tip of the tongue, be alert. This happens when there is hyper-pigmentation, or when you smoke too much.
People suffering from GERD and acid reflux have shown signs of the same.

If your oral hygiene is improper, you could have the condition hitting you too.

Those that pierce the tip of their tongue or use harsh dental appliances would have this problem as well.

Now that we know what types of black spots are there on the tongue, let’s take a look at what causes them in the first place. This makes it better for understanding, before we head on to the remedies that can be used at home.

Possible Causes of Black Spots on Tongue:

1. Hyperpigmentation:

As discussed, when there is an abundance of melanin or pigments in the tongue, or when the pigment cells are found in abundance in one place, black spots appear.

2. Oral cancer

It is rare to have black spots on the tongue cause of oral cancer, say medical experts. However, it is possible to have it too. If it is caused by cancer cells, chances are that the oral symptoms for the same would show up- mostly a chronic sore throat, or the voice hoarseness. You could also have swallowing problems, movement of the jaw restriction, neck and mouth sores internally, and face bleeding too. Medical experts opine, this would be one of the rarest side effects of oral cancer. If you notice the same, panic not. Get in touch with the doctor and follow his or her advise- mostly chemo is used to treat the same, since the radiations help destroy cancer cells.

3. Chemotherapy

Patients suffering from cancer and undergoing chemotherapy too would have noted black spots on their tongue. This does not happen to everyone though.

4. Tongue piercing

It seems to be high fashion to have plenty of piercings on the body, and the tongue too these days. However, tongue piercing too can be reason enough why you have black spots on the tongue, which is caused because of the bruising the tongue has undergone.

Even the jewelry material too can cause the black spots on the tongue. The best metals to wear if you opt for tongue piercing would be gold or titanium jewelry, and when you do have tongue piercings, try and avoid playing with the studs with your tongue.

5. Being anemic

Anemic patients too show signs of the hairy tongue or the black spots on the tongue. Many have reported the same, say medical experts and this is because the spots are too visible- either clustered or scattered.

6. Oral Fibroma

It would be a polyp or a dome shaped benign tumor that would be seen and sometimes round and firm as well- a lump that is attached to the base or has a stalk to the oral cavity tissue part. It mostly looks like freckles on the tongue or tiny moles and would be very dark in color too. There are many reasons why this happens- constant biting of the tongue is one of them, dental appliances would be another and tongue piercing as well would be reason for the same..

7. Allergic reactions and exposure to some chemicals

Chewable tablets to chemically made oral products for the mouth and the gums can cause allergic reactions to the tongue. And this would lead to black patches on the tongue. Moreover, there are medications that could be like allergens to the pH levels of the tongue and that would be dangerous for the tongue- it stains the tongue.

8. Tongue injury and trauma

Most of the black spots seen on the tongue would be because of injury and traumas to the tongue, say experts. For example, if you bite your tongue too much, have tongue piercings etc, you could end up with black spots on the tongue. Even dental appliances can traumatize the tongue and cause black spots.

9. STD and HIV

Safe sex and sexual habits always, or else you could end up with STDs such as genital warts and HIV. They can cause blemishes and spots on the tongue, and in rare cases BLACK SPOTS too. In addition to that, you could also have tongue sores, lip and mouth sores etc. But do not jump the gun thinking you have STDs if you see black spots on the tongue. Check with your doctor and let him or her diagnose the same. Don’t make your own conclusions.

10. Fungal Infections

Most of us are of improper diets, antibiotics, harsh medication, too much alcohol and tobacco consumption, etc, which could lead to hairy tongues or black spots on the tongue. This happens when there are black clusters formed by fungus on the tongue. They disappear on their own when the fungus is decreased and when you stop smoking and drinking too much. You should also have proper hygiene levels to ensure you don’t have a black spotted tongue. Check with your doctor to know what to do.

Tongue Fungal Infections

11. Drinking Alcohol Or Smoking

Smoking and drinking alcohol never did good to anyone’s health. And when done in excess, people have had to suffer from the hairy tongue effect. Even if you chew on too many mints after smoking, it could lead to black tongue effects.

12. Pregnancy: (1-2 Lines Explanation)

Expectant mothers have a lot of changes that their bodies undergo while they are pregnant. This is because of the medication and the hormonal changes in the body.

Pregnancy and contraceptives would cause hormonal changes that can affect the endocrine system and influence the same. This leads to discoloration of the tongue and hyper-pigmentation in most cases.

Now, let’s take a look at the home remedies that you could safely use to bring back the pink tongue you were born with.

Home Remedies for Black Spots on Tongue

1.  Garlic and coconut oil solution

What all you need:

  • A few pods of garlic
  • A tablespoon of coconut oil

Directions:

  1. paste the garlic with a spoon
  1. Add coconut oil to it
  1. Make a gooey formula
  1. Add a little water
  1. Gargle with it four times a day

How it works:

Garlic and coconut oil are anti bacterial and anti microbial and they help ward off the stains

Garlic And Coconut Oil Solution

2. Cinnamon and clove water

What all you need:

  • A few cloves
  • A pinch of cinammon

Directions:

  1. Crush the two into powder
  1. Add water to it and boil
  1. Gargle with the same
  1. Wait for a minute
  1. Rinse with water
  1. Do it four times a day

How it works:

The antiseptic properties in cinammon and cloves help fight the bacteria and fungus that forms dark spots on the tongue and the infections.

3. Neem

What all you need:

  • A few neem leaves
  • Water

Directions:

  1. boil the neem leaves in a cup of water
  1. Strain
  1. Gargle with the same
  1. Rinse mouth
  1. Repeat every three hours each day

How it works:

Neem is antibacterial and antimicrobial, and helps fight the bacteria and the fungal infection, thereby bringing down the black spots on the tongue.

Neem

4. Have Enough Roughage, Fruits and Vegetables

What all you need:

  • Apples
  • Cheekoos
  • Papayas or any fruit with a lot of fibre in it

Directions:

  1. Cut and chew the whole fruit, or have it as a fruit salad

How it works:

The roughage and fibre content in fruits help exfoliate the tongue and keep the plaque at bay

5. Pineapple

What all you need:

  • Pineapple pieces

Directions:

  1. Suck and chew on the whole fruit ten times a day

How it works:

Bromelain helps condition the tongue and attacks the intra cellular debris of the skin and eliminates the black spots over time

Tip:

If you have IBS, do not have pineapple.

Pineapple

6. Stay Hydrated

What all you need:

  • 8 glasses of water

Directions:

  1. Every hour, drink one whole glass of water
  1. Swirl it in the mouth while doing so

How it works:

Water keeps the mouth hydrated and does not allow bacteria and fungi to thrive. Also helps remove plaque from the mouth that can cause black spots on the tongue.

So here were a couple of very easy home remedies that you could use. Now let’s take a look at the prevention of the same.

Prevention:

Oral hygiene

One needs to have the right oral and gum care and hygiene in place, should they wish not to have black spots on the tongue or any oral issues in future. The right oral care can be customised for you by your dentist. Please check with them on how to brush the teeth right, how to clean the tongue right and how to use your mouthwash too.

Cleaning Tongue With Tongue Cleaner

Talking about oral health care, tongue cleaning should come of prime importance. This is why, do not be too harsh with your tongue cleaning routine. The tongue cleaner should be smooth and of high quality, and not sharp. If it is sharp it could tear the tissues of the tongue and this could lead to infection and black spots of the tongue.

Healthy Lifestyle

A healthy diet is to be maintained, not just for your tongue but for the whole body. You need to include in your diet a lot of roughage and fibres, veggies and fruits – they are to be eaten whole as much as possible and raw too. Drink a lot of water everyday, which helps flush out the plaque and toxins hidden in the mouth. Cut down on smoking and drinking too much alcohol.

Avoid Excessive drinking and smoking

Excess of alcohol consumption and smoking can cause black spots on the tongue. This is because of the chemicals and the nicotine, and the tobacco in it. STOP SMOKING!

Follow Doctor’s’ Instructions

There could be various underlying health issues to the body which may or may not show symptoms. If you are confused as to why you have black spots on the tongue, seeking the advise of a doctor is a must. Follow his or her instructions and be safe.

We hope this article comes in handy.

Disclaimer: Please note, the information given here is from research only and not to be intended as a substitute to what your doctor may tell and advise on the same. His or her words would take precedence over what is written here and elsewhere online.

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1 Comment

  1. Rohit

    August 1, 2017 at 12:58 pm

    Are black spots on tongue and black hairy tongue same?

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