Red tongue bumps–not to be confused with the pink or white variety–can be the result of swollen papillae, cold sores, allergic reactions, canker sores, or symptoms of serious problems like syphilis and oral cancer.
Now, don’t start hyperventilating just because the word cancer was in the last sentence. Though there is a miniscule probability of cancer, your red tongue bumps are most likely just a sign of an overworked mouth.
Where do red tongue bumps come from?
Your tongue reacts to things it comes in contact with. If you have been eating overly acidic or spicy foods, tasting boiling hot liquids, or munching on snacks with pointy or rough surfaces you could have irritated some of your taste buds.
Those little knobs (papillae) on your tongue that normally taste everything in your mouth can be the victims of harmful foods if your aren’t careful. And just like the rest of your body, your taste buds swell and become sensitive, making them appear extra red and bumpy.
Red tongue bumps can also be caused by trauma to the tongue (biting it, hitting it, piercing it), so think back to remember if you accidentally jarred your tongue recently.
How are red tongue bumps treated?
Swollen papillae and trauma induced red tongue bumps should heal in approximately 5 to 10 days from the day they appeared. This time frame also applies to canker sores and cold sores.
However, if your red tongue bumps are particularly painful you can find numbing agents that will help reduce the pain in your tongue at any drug store.
Red tongue bumps from allergic reactions can be more serious if they appear in conjunction with other symptoms like a swollen tongue or blocked airways. See a doctor for treatments if there is a possibility the bumps are related to an allergy.
For symptoms that do not heal or begin to heal within 10 days, see a doctor for a proper diagnosis. He or she may be able to prescribe something to help with pain or healing, as well as enlighten you on the causes for your red tongue bumps.
Sometimes red tongue bumps are caused by infections on the surface of your tongue. You need to clean your tongue regularly to avoid these nasty bumps.
How do you clean your tongue?
One of the most effective ways to clean your tongue is the Orabrush. The Orabrush is a tool designed with micro-fiber bristles on the head to help remove gunk on your tongue that causes infections and, not to mention, bad breath.
To use the Orabrush, place the bristled head against your tongue and pull forward. You will immediately see gunk pushed to the end of the brush caught in the bristles that is no longer caught on your tongue.
Your tongue will thank you.