Inflammation of the tongue is called glossitis.

The surface area of the tongue may get smooth and give a glossy appearance due to swelling and inflammation of the tongue.

Glossitis is mainly caused by a lack of nutrition in diet, which can be painless or may cause discomfort.

Causes of the glossitis:

• Allergic reactions to some food and medicines can irritate the tongue.

• Iron deficiency anaemia

• Vitamin 12 deficiency

• Pernicious anaemia

• Coeliac disease

• Crohn’s disease

• Sjogren’s disease

• Infection is caused by bacterias, viruses or fungus.

• Overcleaning of the tongue with a tongue scraper and brushes can cause injury to the tongue that may lead to inflammation

Types of glossitis:

1. Acute glossitis: in which the onset of swelling and inflammation occurs suddenly due to allergic reaction or due to infection.

2. Chronic glossitis: chronic glossitis means, where glossitis recurs for many years, this can occur due to other health conditions.

3. Atrophic glossitis: atrophic glossitis is also known as hunter’s glossitis. It is characterized by the partial or complete absence of the papillae from the tongue that gives a shiny, glossy appearance to the tongue.


• Swelling of the tongue

• Redness or change in the colour of the tongue

• Tenderness or pain in the tongue

• Difficulty in eating and drinking

• Difficulty in swallowing

• Shiny glossy appearance if the tongue


• Physical examination of the tongue: in which the physician will inspection of the oral cavity and look for any abnormalities present in the tongue, mouth or gums.

• Blood test to rule out nutritional deficiency


• Maintain oral hygiene

• A healthy nutritional diet should be taken

• Avoid spicy food

• Avoid alcohol and smoking

• Avoid irritants like certain food or drinks that cause inflammation of the tongue.

Homeopathy medicine:

1. Crotalus horridus: Crotalus horridus is a well-indicated medicine for glossitis. There is numbness and stiffness of the tongue. Yellowish discolouration of the tongue with protrusion towards the right sides. The tongue is swollen with fiery red and dry in the centre smooth and polished from edges.

2. Apis mellifica: Apis has very good results in glossitis. The tongue is red, hot scalded with trembling of the tongue.

Tongue feels raw with constricted feeling. Stinging blisters along the edges of the tongue. Tongue covered with a thick white coat or brown coat.

3. Nitricum Acidum: nitric acid can be given in glossitis where the tongue is clean red with a centred furrow. Mapped tongue with moist fissure. Painful blisters on one side of the tongue. The tongue is sensitive even so soft food causes smarting pain.

4. Lachesis: Lachesis has given good results in glossitis. The tongue is dry red and cracked at the tip. Tongue dry mapped black and stiff. The anterior half of the tongue is smooth and gives a glossy appearance.

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