Glossitis, inflammation of the tongue, tongue infection, smooth tongue, glossodynia or burning mouth syndrome is acute or severe swelling and inflammation of the tongue. It is not serious but it is uncomfortable for those who suffer from it.
Glossitis is usually a symptom of other conditions such as:
- An allergic reaction.
- Viral or bacterial infections such as syphilis.
- Have iron deficiency anemia.
- Family background.
- Injury or irritation due to poorly adapted dental appliances or prostheses.
- Alcoholism and/or smoking.
- Consumption of irritating foods.
Signs of glossitis are:
- Inflammation of the tongue.
- Difficulty speaking, chewing or swallowing.
- Smooth texture of the tongue.
- Sensitive or sore tongue.
- Change in color of the tongue (deep red or pale color).
- Burning, discomfort or pain.
- In extreme cases it can block the airways.
- Alterations in the voice.
Physical examination, physical description, and a blood test can help identify the cause of glossitis.
Treatment of glossitis depends on identifying the cause. If it is due to a bacterial infection, antibiotics will be prescribed. If the cause is in the diet, a modification of it may be enough. Vitamin supplements may also be recommended if there are nutritional deficiencies.
The preventive measure to avoid glossitis is, basically, correct oral hygiene: tooth brushing, flossing, and even periodic professional hygiene.