Beware if you see these wavy patterns on your tongue, you might wake up in ER
Our body is very capable and well-enabled to fight off most of the diseases and ailments on its own, if the body’s immune system is working perfectly. This mostly happens when we eat safe and simple food that is healthy and nutritious.
Interestingly, when our body is under attack from any bacteria or disease or we develop any condition, it gives out some indications that are related to the cause of the said ailment to us. Now it is upto us to recognize the symptoms correctly and get the ailment treated before it does some serious harm.
One such symptom is scalloped tongue, in which the tongue has wavy patterns on the edge of the tongue. This condition may lead to severe consequences if it remains undiagnosed. Here are the symptoms, causes and consequences of this disease.
1 What is scalloped tongue and what are its symptoms?
Scalloped tongue or crenated tongue is a condition where indentations are present on the edges of tongue. These indentations are usually made by teeth putting pressure on the tongue. Some of the individuals have termed the condition as wavy tongue border, where the tongue ridges are present along the edges of the tongue.
When the teeth put pressure on the tongue, it leads to an increase in the size of tongue and then wavy borders are formed on the tongue. Symptoms of scalloped tongue are swelling, enlargement alongside the ridges and increment in the redness of the tongue.
Causes of scalloped tongue
When you see these ridges alongside the tongue, don’t ignore it as it can be your body telling you something about an impending condition that has been developing slowly in your body and may be on the verge of attacking you any moment.
2 Thyroid problems
Hypothyroidism is a condition in which the thyroid gland of the body secretes the thyroid hormone in deficit quantities. One of the major functions of this thyroid hormone is to regulate the metabolism of the body. Since the hormone is secreted in fewer quantities, it leads to slowdown of various functions in the body.
This then leads a chain reaction resulting in the increase in size of many other glands, including tongue. A larger tongue will be a trigger for scalloped tongue condition. Some of the other symptoms of hypothyroidism are huskiness, weariness, misery, hair thinning, muscle aches, constipation, dry skin, inflamed eyelids.
3 Temporomandibular joint syndrome or TMJ syndrome
Temporomandibular joint syndrome or the TMJ syndrome is a condition in which the temporomandibular joint is damaged and it severely affects the muscles in the jaw and the nerves that connect the jaw and the skull.
Ill fitting teeth or any jaw anomaly will make the lower jaw unstable. With TMJ, patients have to use the tongue in order to keep the jaws supported and in place. It will keep the jaw in proper place so that the act of swallowing doesn’t become hard. In due course of time, this habit can cause ridge marks on the tongue and cause a case of scalloped tongue for the patient.
Some symptoms of Temporomandibular joint syndrome are headaches, clicking of jaw or popping sound in the jaw, teeth grinding and facial swelling on the sides.
4 Sleep Apnea
Sleep Apnea is a condition or sleep disorder that disrupts regular pattern of sleep due to irregular breathing during sleep. Patients in this condition may take shallow breaths or take 1 or more pauses in the respiration rhythm. Such disruptions while sleeping can cause the tongue to fall into the cavity of the mouth and pressure is exerted by the teeth on the tongue, causing ridges on the sides of tongue.
5 Mineral/vitamins shortage
Another reason for scalloped tongue can be the deficiency of some much needed minerals or vitamins or both in the body. If there is a deficiency of folate and vitamin B12, it will create too much of red blood cells and it will cause crenated or swollen tongue. So increase intake of foods like eggs, chicken, fish, dairy and leafy green vegetables for fulfilling the normal requirement of vitamin B12.
The problem of scalloped tongue may need you to visit the ER, if any of the above conditions are diagnosed. If you do see those ridges or wavy patterns on your tongue or on the tongue of anyone near to you, do visit your physician as soon as possible.