Health & Wellness

Black Spot on Side of Tongue Causes and Treatment

Have you noticed a black spot on side of tongue? Many tongue discolorations are harmless, but some can be signs of a disease that needs specific care. Many people may worry about a black spot on their tongue. That can be nothing to worry about, but it might signify something more serious.

Black spots on the tongue can have a variety of causes, from minor irritants to more severe diseases like cancer. We will look at the potential causes, symptoms, and indications of black spots on the tongue in this post.

In This Article

  1. Small Black Spot on Side of Tongue
  2. What Causes Black Spots on Tongue
  3. Symptoms of Black Spot on side of Tongue
  4. How to Remove Black Spots on Tongue Naturally

Small Black Spot on Side of Tongue

A tiny black spot on tongue is a localized area of dark pigmentation or discoloration that can take the form of a spot, blotch, or bump. The spot might be smooth, rough, elevated, or flat and can vary in size, shape, and texture. Depending on the cause, the color can be brown, black, blue, grey, or purple.

What Causes Black Spots on Tongue

Several reasons can cause a black spot on the side of the tongue. Some of the most typical causes include:

1. Injury or Trauma

A dark mark may develop on the tongue due to blood or bruising after accidentally biting or scratching it. Once the damaged tissue heals, the discoloration might fade away by itself.

2. Hyperpigmentation

The tongue can develop darker patches of pigmentation similar to the skin due to genetics, aging, or environmental factors, including smoking or sun exposure. If the black spot is benign, it cannot produce any more symptoms.

3. Medications

Tongue discoloration is a side effect of some medicines, including antibiotics, antimalarials, chemotherapeutic agents, and antidepressants. Other symptoms including dry mouth, a metallic taste in the tongue, or oral sores, could also develop along with the black spot.

4. Infections

Black patches on side of tongue can appear as a result of fungal, bacterial, or viral infections. For instance, the tongue and other mouth areas may develop white or black spots due to oral thrush, a yeast infection. On the tongue and mouth, syphilis, a sexually transmitted disease, can cause black, painless sores.

5. Mouth Cancer

Even though it’s rare, a black spot on the side of the tongue may indicate oral cancer, mainly if it lasts longer than two weeks, gets more significant, or bleeds easily. Other signs of oral cancer include numbness, chronic pain, and difficulty swallowing.

Symptoms of Black Spot on side of Tongue

black dot on side of tongue may come with additional signs or symptoms, depending on the reason, like:

1. Pain or Tenderness

If the spot is due to trauma or infection, it may be sore or sensitive to touch or food.

2. Swelling or Redness

If inflamed, the tongue tissue may swell, get red, or become rough around the affected area.

3. Dry Mouth or Bad breath

If the discoloration is caused by medication or an infection, it may interfere with saliva production and cause dry mouth or halitosis (bad breath).

4. Enlarged Lymph Nodes

The adjacent lymph nodes may swell or become sensitive if the black spot indicates mouth cancer or other infections.

5. Speaking or Eating Difficulties

Speaking or chewing may be difficult if the spot is on the side of the tongue, especially if it is significant or unpleasant.

How to Remove Black Spots on Tongue Naturally

Poor dental hygiene, smoking, certain drugs, and medical problems are just a few of the things that might result in black spots on the side of the tongue. The underlying cause affects the treatment. The following are some possible solutions:

1. Oral Hygiene

Your dental hygiene habits will need to be improved if they are the root of the dark spot on side of tongue. This includes using fluoride-containing toothpaste twice daily, flossing, and mouthwash. If your tongue has debris, consider using a tongue scraper.

2. Quit Smoking

The quickest way to treat black spots on the tongue caused by smoking is to stop smoking if you currently do so. Quitting smoking can also enhance your general oral health.

3. Medications

If a medication is causing a black spot on your tongue, your doctor may advise you to stop taking the medication or switch to a different one. However, you should never stop your medication without consulting your doctor.

4. Any Medical Condition

If the black spot on the tongue is caused by a disease such as oral cancer or oral melanoma, the doctor will prescribe an appropriate treatment. This may include a biopsy to determine the cause and proper treatment, such as surgery, radiation, or chemotherapy.

It’s important to note that you should see a doctor if you notice any changes in the appearance of your tongue or have any other symptoms, such as pain or difficulty swallowing. Early diagnosis and treatment of an underlying condition can improve outcomes.

Frequently Asked Questions & Answers

Q. What is a Purple Spot on side of Tongue?

Ans- Various conditions, including oral infections, medications, trauma, and diseases, including oral cancer, can result in purple spots on the side of the tongue. If you see any unusual spots or changes in your tongue’s appearance, it’s essential to get medical treatment, especially if they last or are accompanied by other symptoms.

Q. What does a black spot on tongue mean?

Ans- Several factors, such as poor oral hygiene, smoking, certain drugs, or medical disorders, including oral cancer, can result in black spots on the tongue. 

Black patches can, however, also represent a typical variation in pigmentation, particularly in those with darker skin tones.

You should consult a doctor to find out the underlying cause and the most effective treatment if your tongue’s appearance changes or you suffer additional symptoms like discomfort or trouble swallowing.

Q. What does black spots on tongue indicate?

Ans- Several things, such as poor oral hygiene, smoking, medication use, or medical disorders like oral cancer, may cause black spots on the tongue. Black patches can, however, also represent a typical fluctuation in pigmentation, particularly in those with darker skin tones. It is advised that you get medical help.

Q. Why is there a black bump on tongue?

Ans- A few factors, such as trauma, irritation, inflammation, or medical diseases, including oral cancer, can result in a black bump on the tongue. If you see any strange bumps or alterations in your tongue’s appearance, it’s essential to seek medical assistance.

Q. Is it normal to have black spots on tongue?

Ans- It depends on the cause of the black spots. In some cases, such as staining from certain foods or drinks, black spots may be harmless and normal. However, it may not be normal and needs to be examined by a healthcare provider if the black spots are accompanied by other symptoms or are a sign of an underlying medical condition.

Q. Is black tongue a sign of cancer?

Ans- A black tongue can be a symptom of some types of oral cancer, while it is not always a sign of malignancy.

In addition to the black tongue, other associated symptoms and risk factors should be considered to decide whether further testing is necessary.

If you are worried about any unexpected changes in your tongue or oral health, speaking with a healthcare professional is always preferable.

Read Also: What does your Tongue says About your Health

In Closing

In conclusion, many people may find a black spot on the side of their tongue to be worrisome. It can result from various things, from harmless irritants to serious medical diseases like oral cancer.

Any strange changes in the tongue, such as the appearance of black spots, should be carefully observed, and if necessary, quick medical attention should be sought.

A healthcare professional can diagnose accurately and suggest the most effective treatment. Remember that early detection and treatment can significantly improve outcomes. Therefore it is essential to give oral health priority and get help from a doctor if you experience any disturbing symptoms.


  1. Hyperpigmentation of the Tongue
  2. Pigmented Fungiform Papillae of the Tongue and Lingual Fimbriae as Single Presentation in Adult
  3. Example of a tumor on the left side face of the tongue

Dr Maria

MD. Board Certified physician. Fellowship In Family Medicine UK. 8 years of medical experience in Lifestyle-related health disorders. Graduated from AIIMS – All India Institute Of Medical Science, INDIA

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