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Thick white and yellow coating on tongue surface. Bicarb soda, menthol based cough have temporary results. Why?

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Hi, I am a 40 yo female, 162cm, 50kg, reasonable health. I have a thick, white/yellow coating on most of my tongue's surface. I brush most mornings and nights with bicarb soda and then gargle bicarb solution. This helps. Also, I find when I suck menthol based cough lolly I get the pinkest tongue but can't find any reason why this would improve it. However, this rsult is only temporary. This morning I noticed a little blood in the bicarb solution I spat out. What should I do?
Posted Sun, 22 Apr 2012 in General Health
Answered by Dr. Radhika 3 hours later

Thanks for the query.

You have provided me with good information.

You have white coating of the tongue, also you noticed a little blood when you spat out the bicarbonate solution today morning.

There are several possibilities for what causes a white coating on the tongue. The most common cause of a white coating is a candidal infection, which is caused by fungus. It can also be caused by antibiotics or steroids or simply be the buildup of dead cells on the tongue. Finally, a white coating on the tongue may be caused by dehydration.

Giving the tongue a good scrub using a tongue scraper will remove most of the white tongue coating, and eliminate most of the bad breath that comes with it. A follow up with antibacterial mouthwash should clear most of the white tongue coating. If it is due to an fungal infection you will need to use an anti-fungal mouth wash/paint after consulting physician. Also drink sufficient water to prevent dehydration causing white coating in tongue.

You can also use bicarbonate soda solution for gargling the mouth, though menthol and bicarbonate helps you if there are any other causes like fungal you will need to be seen by a physician.

Also sometimes due to excessive gargling or spitting there might be a tear in the capillaries causing streaks of blood in sputum.There is no need to worry. Do it gently.

I hope I have answered your query. Please accept my answer if you have no further queries.

Wishing you good health.


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