A scalloped tongue, also known as a crenated tongue, piecrust tongue, or lingua indenta, is characterized by indented, rippled, or scalloped edges along the sides of the tongue. This condition typically arises when the tongue persistently presses against the teeth.
Despite its unusual appearance, a scalloped tongue is usually not painful. However, it can be indicative of underlying health issues. Therefore, if you notice such changes in your tongue, it’s advised to have it checked by a healthcare professional.
Although they are virtually evident, they have very little impact on appearance or smile. However, a scalloped tongue is an important indicator of underlying critical complications to your dental health. Therefore, you should always take proactive measures to help prevent or treat your indented tongue.
While there is a plethora of factors that contribute to the presence of a scalloped tongue, they are most commonly related with poor dental hygiene and other underlying medical issues. In addition to this, a scalloped tongue can also be the resultant outcome of a dental problem known as Macroglossia, i.e., an abnormal enlargement or swelling of the tongue.
Scalloped tongues are frequently overlooked by the naked eye. But, if left untreated, they can become a primary component of several other dental and medical conditions. Hence, before we explore our treatment options, we must first understand what causes a scalloped tongue.
What Causes Scalloped Tongue?
Scalloped edges are the resultant outcome of pressing your tongue against your teeth. However, the sides of the tongue develop these uneven forms for the following reasons:
What are the Symptoms of a Scalloped Tongue?
As soon as these symptoms have been discovered, you need to visit your doctor first, to rule out any chronic and potentially impactful conditions. Next, you will need to visit your dentists to tackle this issue using the dental way.
Firstly, a doctor will assess your medical history, and then initiate the procedure for diagnosing a scalloped tongue. This is done by conducting a series of tests such as a blood test or a biopsy, to rule out any potential medical conditions you may have.
Next, the doctor will make use of CT scans and MRI scans to get a visual analysis of your tongue. Once this is done and if no other potential health issues have been identified, you will be referred to a dentist who will begin to analyse your oral health through dental instruments and dental scanners.
Once a diagnosis is made, your dentist will work with you to discuss a variety of dental treatments that will help treat your scalloped tongue problem.
Treating Scalloped Tongue:
The scalloped tongue can be treated using a plethora of therapeutic approaches. However, the selection of a suitable treatment option largely depends upon the cause of the problem.
Case in point, if you develop a rippled tongue as a result of a genetic or inflammatory condition, then you may require invasive surgery to either remove the excess build-up of cells and tissues in your tongue or restore the shape of your tongue.
Apart from these complicated solutions, there are several other ways to treat scalloped tongue, such as:
According to the medical advice provided by our dental practitioners, listed below are some of the home remedies for the scalloped tongue:
- Remember to stay hydrated: You may easily prevent or decrease the symptoms of a scalloped tongue by drinking plenty of water.
- Balanced Diet: A healthy and well-balanced diet is essential. This decreases the likelihood of nutritional deficiencies harming your body.
- Oral Hygiene: it is equally essential to follow good oral hygiene. By doing so, you can easily preserve the health of your tongue.
- Improve lifestyle habits: you need to incorporate some major changes to your lifestyle such as doing yoga, quitting smoking, maintaining a healthy weight, and avoiding stressful situations.
- OTC Medications: By taking over-the-counter medications like pain relievers or anti-inflammatory medicines, you can reduce the swelling of your tongue.
- Compress-based Treatment: apply both cold and warm compresses alternatively to your tongue. Follow this pattern regularly for 20 minutes a day.
- Routine Dental Check-ups: work with your dentist to put a halt to bad orthodontic habits such as clenching, grinding, or bruxism. Also, a regular dental check-up will help maintain your oral health.
When to see a doctor?
Do not keep a problematic scalloped tongue on the back burner!
When you notice a lingering pain or redness on your tongue, seek medical attention as early as possible. If these problems are kept untreated for a longer period, they can expose your oral health to a wide set of dental problems. It can also cause detrimental effects on your overall physical well-being.
Moreover, according to our dental experts, you need to visit a doctor as soon as your tongue stops responding to anti-inflammatory medications. Also, if your swelling does not reduce despite making proactive and preventative lifestyle changes, then you would require medical help.
A dentist can easily identify unhealthy dental habits that contribute to a scalloped tongue. So, remember to get your dental health checked from time to time. The dentist may suggest different types of viable orthodontic treatment options that will help correct your bite, and thereby reduce your scalloped tongue symptoms.
Armed with a team of dental experts, we can guarantee you smooth and cohesive orthodontic care, that will leave you feeling confident about your tongue.
Check out our website, to know more about our orthodontic services.