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Red dots on the tongue: Causes and treatment

by Alivia Nyhan
Published: Last Updated on

Changes in the general appearance of the tongue can reflect certain health problems, be they infectious, nutritional or any other disease. In a normal state of health the person reflects the tongue pale red or pink without any type of spots or bumps. This indicates that the organs and circulation are working properly.

The doubt arises when suddenly red dots appear on the tongue, this is a fairly common problem and is related to certain reasons. These red dots may appear minimally on the surface of the tongue or may be accompanied by burning, pain, and swelling. In this FastlyHealarticle we will talk about red spots on the tongue: why they come out and how to cure them .

Red dots on the tongue – what are they?

If you have red dots on your tongue, don’t worry, these are nothing more than bumps of blood accumulated in this muscle as important as the tongue. These red dots can vary in size and color, ranging from light pink to deep red. In addition, the extent of the area in which it can be viewed varies.

On some occasions, the presence of red spots on the tongue can extend to the inner part of the cheeks, the roof of the mouth, the gums and the lips.

Regardless of the size, color, appearance and extent of red spots on the tongue, it is important to know what the causes are . We will explain them to you below!

Why do I get the red spots on my tongue?

The appearance of the tongue reflects the well-being and health of people, so any change in its appearance indicates a health problem. It can be said that the main causes by leaving the red spots on the tongue are:

Swollen taste buds

The inflammation of the taste buds is a common very common cause and is associated with motifs such as:

  • Burns from consuming very hot food.
  • Eating irritating foods.
  • Eating very spicy foods.
  • The habit of smoking.
  • Some accidental bite of the tongue.

All these situations generate irritation and inflammation on the tongue and, therefore, on the taste buds.

Scarlet fever

Scarlet fever is an acute, infectious disease characterized by high fever. It is caused by group A streptococci that lodge in the throat. This condition is also manifested by presenting red spots on the tongue. However, in the initial stages these points appear on the neck and chest and then spread to the tongue.


This disease is very little known, however, it is an autoimmune disorder that is characterized by presenting a particular symptom that is the strawberry-like tongue, that is, by red spots similar to a wart. This is a contagious disease that occurs in children under 5 years of age, it is also related to a deficiency in vitamin B12 or complex B. The Spanish Association of Pediatrics describes that Kawasaki syndrome has a worldwide distribution 1 . It is a pediatric disease that occurs in 85% of patients under 5 years of age.

Canker sores or mouth sores

The mouth sores are painful blisters very easily recognized, besides presenting the red dots lining the blister causes other symptoms such as fever, malaise and swollen glands. Mouth sores are a common and extremely painful problem , but they can heal on their own in less than 2 weeks. In the following FastlyHealarticle we will talk about the remedies for tongue sores .

Digestive problems

This is another reason why red spots may appear on the surface of the tongue, this is associated with some disorders such as heartburn.
Allergy: any allergic reaction may be related to the presence of red dots on the tongue, this can be caused by mites or animal hair and taking some medications.


Iron and vitamin B12 deficiency is described as the main cause of anemia , a common symptom of these is a reddened tongue with slight red dots .
Consumption of alcohol and drugs: or any ingestion of an irritating substance can cause alteration in the surface of the tongue, developing certain modifications in its appearance.

Geographic language

It is another reason why red dots appear on the tongue, this condition is harmless and has irregular spots on the surface of the tongue. This condition goes away on its own. If you want to know everything about the geographic language in the following article we will explain everything to you.

Oral cancer

Finally, oral cancer is another reason why changes in the general appearance of the tongue can occur. Generally, it usually appears in the form of a small spot on the tongue that can be red or white. However, it must be clarified that compared to the other alterations that we have discussed, the incidence of oral cancer is much lower.

How to cure red spots on the tongue

There are several habits that we must take into account to cure red spots on the tongue . We will explain them to you below:

  • Hygiene : it is the first way to cure the presence of red spots on the tongue. On the other hand, in case of digestive problems, antacids will be essential to improve this discomfort, it is recommended to use maalox or mylanta.
  • Apply ice : in the affected area, that is, where the red dots are evident on the surface of the tongue, it will reduce pain and inflammation if they occur.
  • Use antihistamines : it will be necessary in case the red dots are caused by allergic reactions. In the same way, increasing the consumption of vitamin B in the diet will be able to replace the deficiency that the body has of it, thus improving this discomfort.
  • Chewing gum : it also allows the mouth to maintain optimal saliva production and to maintain proper hygiene.

Although there are many factors related to the presence of red dots on the tongue, it should not be forgotten that it is important to go to the dentist as soon as the first signs or changes in the general appearance of the tongue appear.

This article is merely informative, at FastlyHeal .com we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any type of diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor in the case of presenting any type of condition or discomfort.

If you want to read more articles similar to Red spots on the tongue: why do they come out and how to cure them , we recommend that you enter our Teeth and mouth category .

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