Proud part of a passionate group of dentists united
to provide dental care to patients of all ages.

What Could Be Causing a White Tongue?

dca-blog_tongue-scraping-brushing

Do you suddenly have a strange coating on your tongue or completely white tongue? This could just be a buildup of debris that can be quickly wiped away, or it may be a sign of a medical issue. Only your dentist can diagnose your case, but learn more about the medical problems that may be causing your white tongue.

Oral Thrush

The Reason: Oral thrush is also called candidiasis and it results from an excess of yeast in the mouth, which creates the appearance of a coated tongue. It often occurs after you’ve taken antibiotics, if you’re under stress, or facing an illness because these conditions disturb the balance of bacteria in your system.

The Remedy: You can wipe away the white sections of yeast. You always should brush your tongue when brushing your teeth, especially if you’ve been sick or on medication. Why should you brush your tongue? Since oral thrush can develop at any time, brushing your tongue on a regular basis could help to prevent any possible problems. But to completely correct the white tongue, it should be treated with an antifungal medication, tablets, or lozenges that get your system back in balance.

Oral Lichen Planus

The Reason: Oral lichen planus is a chronic inflammatory condition caused by an autoimmune response. It can result in a coated tongue, yet the coating appears as a lace-like white pattern.

The Remedy: There is really no treatment since it is related to an autoimmune response, but it should be continually monitored by a doctor since any changes could indicate oral cancer.

Linea Alba

The Reason: Instead of causing a completely coated tongue, linea alba results in a thin white line along the edges of the tongue. It is simply caused by an irritation or trauma from aggressive chewing.

The Remedy: Since biting your tongue usually causes it, no treatment is needed.

Leukoplakia

The Reason: The white coating cannot be removed with a quick cleansing with this type of coated tongue. The cause of this condition is sometimes uncertain, but it may be associated with tobacco use or a recurrent irritation in the mouth.

The Remedy: The remedy could be as simple as stopping a smoking habit, but since it results from smoking, it may be an early indication of oral cancer. It’s wise to have your doctor do a biopsy and continually monitor the area for any changes.

Hairy Leukoplakia

The Reason: This condition is seen as a hairy, irregular white patch along the sides of the tongue. It’s caused by the autoimmune condition called Epstein-Barr.

The Remedy: This type of coated tongue can be a recurrent problem, so people with an immune-compromising condition are usually treated with antiviral medications. If you are not suffering from a weakened immune system, then an HIV test may be given to see if there is any correlation.

To learn about our family dentistry practices in Atlanta, call us today or make an appointment.

Imagix Dental and its affiliated practices offer affordable family dentistry and gentle, compassionate dental care in Atlanta. Our offices are conveniently located with extended hours to meet your needs. Our practices provide most dental services, from basic preventative care and general dentistry to specialized procedures and complete dental reconstruction. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Patient satisfaction is our top priority and we strive to provide the exceptional, affordable dental care and personal touch that lead to lasting relationships. A smiling patient is our greatest reward and we look forward to keeping those smiles healthy, beautiful, and bright. Discover affordable dentists who truly care.

Read What Our Patients Say
Patient Reviews
The extreme professional yet warm and sincere staff. From front desk, to MA to tech to physician.
Xavier M.
Fast and professional! I love this office!
Tiffany G.
Great customer care. friendly environment.
Noel N.
The staff are very kid-friendly and persistent! My daughter loves to come here and this will forever be here dental office!
Darius M.
Another 5-star experience with Sherry, Kira and Dr. Baine! I’ve always hated going to the dentist, but Sherry has the most perfect touch – she is a 10+ Dental Hygienist! : ) and Dr. Baine, well […]
Cheryl C.
Friendly and competent staff
Karen F.
Great customer service and the dentist does great work.
Tiffany F.
The friendliest staff and definitely the most professional staff. I thoroughly enjoyed my visit there today.
Randy B.
Comfortable and family environment
Dylan H.
Awesome professionalism with care and maintenance before and after the surgery.
Doris H.
Taz is amazing & I always look forward to seeing her at my dental visits.
Brian F.
Everyone was very nice and professional. I was a new patient but felt like I’d been going there for a while.
Kelly S.
Dr. Prempeh was very kind and extremely informative. Not only did she take time to explain what she was doing but she helped my son feel at ease for his first dentist visit. The staff was friendly […]
Carter C.
I cannot say enough wonderful things about the service and staff of Legacy. From scheduling to our visit they took great care of my little one. I’m so happy to have found this dentist.
Jamina P.
Dr. Millkey and staff were great with my daughter! She went for her first visit to the dentist today at 20 months old. I was expecting a few tears but to my surprise she did great! Dr. Millkey took […]
Amy L.
Kim has worked wonders with our insurance company and was always available for any questions. Great service! Very happy with our choice!!
Stephanie R.
Just brought my 9 year old for first time filling. Dr. Patel did it efficiently. Her assistant, Charleesa, was professional and patient with my little one. And Ashley, the lady who checked us out was […]
Alan X.
Very professional. Dentist was very qualified. Great care
Beth L.
Courteous and respectful staff. I know exactly what to expect each visit. They listen to my needs and concerns.
Debra C.
Very professional, very clean , great staff from front to back
Michael U.
We Accept Most Insurance Plans!
Learn More

We accept most insurance plans and will be happy to help you understand the coverage that you have. We will do our best to see that you receive your maximum insurance benefits for all covered services.

No Insurance? No Worries! See our discounts and offers here