A red, burning tongue is painful–not only painful because your tongue is sore and throbbing, but you also usually can’t taste anything when your tongue is burning. That’s real pain.
When your tongue feels like it is burning or feels as if it has been scalded, you may need some help.
Causes of Red, Burning Tongue
A red, burning tongue can have multiple causes. Canker sores and trauma to the tongue (biting it or hitting it) can cause swelling and sometimes includes a red sore. These spots can feel like they have been burned. And when a canker sore is accidentally exposed to salt or acid, your mouth will feel like it’s burning.
Over exposure to highly acidic, salty, or extremely hot foods can also burn your tongue, leaving red scald marks. These marks should heal within a few days.
Now, there can also be more serious reasons for a red, burning tongue that won’t necessarily heal on their own. These include oral thrush, geographic tongue, and burning tongue syndrome.
Oral thrush is normally found on people’s tongues who have recently been taking large doses of antibiotics for other health reasons. Antibiotics taken orally can hurt the tongue and leave a line down the center of the tongue that appears red and burned.
Geographic tongue can cause a burning sensation on the tongue in red patches, usually surrounded by a white border. These patches are groups of papillae that die and are replaced slowly.
Burning tongue syndrome, or burning mouth syndrome, has side effects including a widespread burning sensation, dry mouth, and a metallic taste in the mouth.
All of these things cause a red, burning tongue and take medicine and time to heal. See a doctor if you think you may have any of these symptoms.
Treating and Preventing a Red, Burning Tongue
Many sources suggest having a balanced diet and reduced stress will help to heal and prevent a burning tongue. Avoiding hot, spicy, and acidic foods that would irritate your tongue.
Avoiding tobacco products, alcohol, mint, cinnamon, and harsh mouth washes will also reduce irritation and burning on your tongue.
Good oral hygiene can aid in the treatment and prevention of red, burning tongue problems. Brushing your tongue regularly is the most important part.
Brushing your tongue can prevent burning tongue problems that are caused by bacteria on the surface of the tongue. The best tool for brushing your tongue is the Orabrush.
The Orabrush has special micro fiber bristles made to pull harmful gunk off your tongue. And when the gunk is gone, your tongue is able to return to its happy, pink self. So make sure to brush your tongue!