UK News

Do you have a “bulging tongue”? We have important news for your health

You probably don’t spend much, if any, time looking at your device Tongue ― but this body part can actually reveal a lot about your health.

Take its shape for example. A wavy tongue is when, as the name suggests, “the sides of the tongue are curled or dented.” Dr. Neeraj Panchal, chief of oral and maxillofacial surgery at Penn Presbyterian Medical Center, told HuffPost. “It typically occurs as a result of the tongue constantly pressing against the teeth.”

This condition is also known as notched tongue or pie tongue and can be observed by sticking out the tongue. Look for irregular ridges or waves along the side edges that “seem to shape the shape of your teeth.” DR. Soroush Zaghia Los Angeles ear, nose and throat doctor and sleep surgeon told HuffPost.

A wavy tongue has indentations of teeth on the sides.

Cheekylorns via Getty Images

A wavy tongue has indentations of teeth on the sides.

Below, experts explain some possible reasons why your tongue looks like this and what it might mean for you:

1. You may have a vitamin deficiency.

A deficiency in certain nutrients—particularly B vitamins like B12, folic acid (B9), and riboflavin (B2)—can lead to a swollen tongue, as well as other oral health problems like gum disease, according to Zaghi.

“This swelling can cause the tongue to press against the teeth and create a wavy appearance,” he said. “These vitamins are crucial for cell regeneration and maintaining healthy mucosal tissue in the mouth.”

2. You may clench or grind your teeth.

Another possible cause of a scalloped tongue? Bad oral habits, such as: Clenching or grinding teeth (The medical term is bruxism). These behaviors are quite common among people who do this Dealing with significant stress or anxiety. Signs of teeth grinding and clenching These include headaches, jaw pain, tooth wear, and sensitivity to hot and cold foods.

These conditions ““Put extra pressure on the sides of the tongue, which may result in a wavy appearance over time,” Zaghi said. “Tongue thrusting, in which the tongue is often pressed too hard against the teeth, can also contribute to the disease.”

3. You might be dehydrated.

Inadequate fluid intake can cause tissues in the body to swell, including the tongue.

“A swollen tongue may press against the teeth more often or more strongly, resulting in the characteristic scalloped edges,” said Zaghi.

4. You may have limited tongue space.

“Anatomical factors such as a narrow or high-arched palate or a recessed jaw can limit the space in the mouth available for the tongue,” Zaghi said. “This restriction forces the tongue to press against the teeth,” which results in these depressions.

5. You may have sleep apnea.

Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a breathing disorder repeatedly disturbed at night due to obstruction of the upper respiratory tract. The condition, which includes symptoms such as loud snoring and daytime sleepiness, is more common in people with certain anatomical features, such as: small or recessed jaw or big tongue.

If someone with OSA has difficulty breathing at night, they may be doing so unconsciously Press your tongue against your teeth.

“Conditions such as obstructive sleep apnea, in which the tongue can block the airway during sleep, are often associated with limited tongue space,” Zaghi said.

If left untreated, OSA can occur serious health consequences, such as an increased risk of cardiovascular problems or be involved in a car accident due to lack of sleep.

6. You could have a temporomandibular joint disorder.

Disorders of the temporomandibular joint (temporomandibular joint), which connects your lower jawbone to your skull, can occur Cause symptoms such as jaw painEar pain or difficulty opening or closing your mouth.

“The misalignment or dysfunction associated with TMJ disorders can reduce space for the tongue and contribute to a wavy appearance,” Zaghi said.

7. You may have a thyroid problem.

Hypothyroidism is a condition in which your body doesn’t produce enough thyroid hormones. In some people, hypothyroidism can cause the tongue to swell and press harder against the teeth. Other symptoms include: Fatigue, weight gain, cold tolerance and thinning hair.

A chronically crooked tongue can be a sign of an underlying health problem.  So it's worth getting it checked.

Juli Alcantara via Getty Images

A chronically crooked tongue can be a sign of an underlying health problem. So it’s worth getting it checked.

Is a protruding tongue a cause for concern?

A serrated tongue is generally not harmful in and of itself, Zaghi explained. However, chronic scaling could be a sign of an underlying health problem that needs treatment, he said. Therefore, it is important to find out the root cause.

Zaghi says you should make an appointment with a doctor if the bulge persists for a long time, if you have developed sores on your tongue that are painful or slow to heal, or if you have other symptoms such as difficulty swallowing or difficulty speaking or have observed other changes in your oral health.

In general, it’s a good idea to see a doctor or dentist for an exam any time you notice “unusual lesions in the mouth or tongue,” Panchal said, as “early diagnosis of lesions is essential.”

Additionally, if you’ve noticed potential symptoms of some of the other health problems mentioned above – such as sleep apnea, temporomandibular joint disorder, or an underactive thyroid – it’s also worth seeing a doctor. Depending on the nature of your symptoms, this may be your GP, a dentist or another specialist.

“Treatment could include dietary changes, orthodontic treatments to address limited space on the tongue, interventions for oral habits such as bruxism, or treatment of related conditions such as temporomandibular joint disorders or sleep apnea,” Zaghi said.

A doctor can help you determine the cause of your scalloped tongue and find the right treatment options for you, Zaghi said.

“This proactive approach not only ensures resolution of scalloping, but also contributes to overall oral and general health.”

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button