Cracked Tongue or Fissured Tongue – Should You be Worried?

Have you ever worried because you have cracked or fissured tongue? Don’t worry, you are not alone, millions of people around the world have it. The good news is that this condition is often harmless and is usually considered as variant of normal tongue architecture. Although tongue fissures are harmless it is wise to visit the doctor or oral specialist and confirm the case before making decision by yourself.

What is fissured tongue or cracked tongue?

Fissured or cracked on tongue simply denotes a harmless condition of the tongue where there are shallow or deep cracks, grooves or fissures on the surface the tongue. Fissured tongue is also called as scrotal tongue or lingua plicata. Although tongue fissures are often diagnosed in adulthood, it can also be seen during childhood. As we grow fissured tongue seems to be more prominent and severe (with increasing age). Men are more affected than females.

Fissured Tongue Causes

The exact cause of fissured tongue is unknown. Experts suspects it may be inherited or may be associated with certain conditions. It is sometime seen in Down syndrome, Melkersson-Rosenthal syndrome and oro-facial granulomatosis. It is also associated with pustular psoriasis and geographic tongue.

Signs and symptoms of fissured tongue

Most of the cases of fissured tongue may be asymptomatic unless derbis builds up in these fissures. Fissured tongue mostly affects top surface of the tongue that sometimes extends out to the edges of the tongue. The depth and size of the fissures varies, it may just be shallow or as deep as 6 mm in diameter. When large and prominent, the fissures or grooves may connect with each other separating the tongue into different sections or lobules.

Fissured Tongue Pictures
How is the diagnosis made?

Diagnosis is usually made with just direct visual examinations. Your dentist or healthcare provider may spot it initially. No other tests are required but your doctor may check for possible association if any.

Fissured Tongue Treatment

There is no specific therapy or medications for fissured tongue. As this condition is harmless, no treatment is required besides cosmetic concern. If bad breath, infection or any other symptoms are experienced due to debris collection on fissures, it is advised to brush the top surface of the tongue regularly. This will eliminate any derbis in the fissures and help prevent infection and bad breath. Make sure to hydrate yourself with plenty of water and avoid excessive spicy and hot food if it bothers you. If tongue fissuring was due to infection, your doctor will provide the medications accordingly.

If your tongue fissures are painful or if there is any bleeding and other associated signs and symptoms, visit the doctor immediately. He/she will evaluate the case and manage accordingly. Don’t try to diagnose or treat yourself just because you have seen some pictures or fissured tongue remedies on the net. Before treating it by yourself make sure you are doing it the right way so you don’t have to regret later.

In most of the cases fissured tongue or cracked tongue is nothing to worry about. Just make sure to confirm the case with the oral specialist and maintain good oral hygiene.

 

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Comments

  1. About 8 years ago an MD, as part of a routine blood panel, ran a homocysteine test which turned out to be elevated. Elevated homocysteine is a cardiac risk factor and relates to production of a waste product purportedly to be related to Vitamin B deficiency. She suggested that I take a hi-potency B vitamin. Later I added 4 tablets of 800 microgram folic acid tablets (3.2 milligrams). Now years later my tongue which had been moderately cracked/fissured is almost entirely smooth. The experience of one person is certainly not good stats but increasing B vitamins might work in others too. (And my homosysteine levels dropped into the normal range and have stayed there too.

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  1. […] (viral, bacterial or fungal) may be involved. It has also been associated with psoriasis and fissured tongue. Few cases tend to run in families too. Although not a definitive cause, hot and spicy foods tend […]

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