What other symptoms might occur with a white tongue?
A white tongue may occur with other symptoms, which vary depending on the underlying disease, disorder or condition. Common symptoms include:
Change in texture such as a smooth tongue
- Dry mouth (xerostomia)
Loss of appetite
Oral rash, blisters, ulcers or sores
Swollen, enlarged or bloated tongue
Serious symptoms that might indicate a life-threatening condition
In some cases, a white tongue can indicate a serious or life-threatening condition that should be immediately evaluated in an emergency setting. Seek immediate medical care (call 911) if you, or someone you are with, have any of these life-threatening symptoms:
Bluish coloration of the lips or fingernails
Change in level of consciousness or alertness, such as passing out or unresponsiveness
Coughing up blood
Difficulty breathing, wheezing or shortness of breath
High fever (higher than 101 degrees Fahrenheit)
Sudden swelling of the face, lips or tongue
Swollen lymph nodes
Tongue redness and warmth
What is a white tongue?
A white tongue is white discoloration of all or a part of the tongue, an organ that is composed mainly of muscle. Your tongue may look like it has a white coating or white patches or spots, and may or may not be painful.
A white tongue may be caused by a coating of dead cells and debris, which can accumulate due to poor oral hygiene, excessive alcohol use, smoking, or dehydration... Read more about white tongueintroduction
What causes a white tongue?
In many cases, a white coating on the tongue is caused by a layer of dead skin cells and debris that can be cleaned or scraped off the tongue. Some common conditions that lead to a visible white layer include dehydration, poor oral hygiene, excessive alcohol use, and smoking tobacco. A white tongue can also be a symptom of a variety of other disorders and diseases, such as a bacterial infection... Read more about white tonguecauses