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What’s Turning My Tongue Red?

The human tongue should have a healthy, pink color. Therefore, if you ever notice that your tongue has turned red, this may be cause for concern. There is a number of reasons that your tongue may have turned red, including the following:

  • Benign Migratory Glossitis: This condition is characteristic of patterns forming on your tongue that resemble geographic formations, giving this condition the nickname “geographic tongue”. Sometimes, these patterns will have a thin, white outline. It is usually a harmless condition, though you should talk to our Bellingham dentist if it persists longer than two weeks.
  • Scarlet Fever: If your red tongue comes with swollen taste buds that give it a strawberry-like appearance, you might have this disease. In such a case, you will want to talk to your doctor to learn more.
  • Kawasaki Syndrome: Generally, this condition will only be observed in young children. It is accompanied by a high fever, and sometimes swelling in the hands and feet. Children suffering from this condition should be brought to a doctor.
  • Vitamin Deficiency: Occasionally, a red tongue can mean that you simply need to get more vitamin B12 or folic acid.