Signs and symptoms of black, hairy tongue include:
- Black, yellow or brown discoloration of the tongue
- A hairy or furry appearance of the tongue
- Altered taste or metallic taste in mouth
- Bad breath (halitosis)
- Gagging sensation in some people
When to see a doctor
Though unattractive, black, hairy tongue is usually a temporary, harmless condition. See your doctor if:
Apr. 22, 2011
- You're concerned about the appearance of your tongue
- Your signs and symptoms persist for more than 10 days
- Goldstein B, et al. Oral lesions. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed Jan. 25, 2011.
- Images in clinical medicine: Black hairy tongue. The New England Journal of Medicine. 2006;354:67.
- Cleaning your teeth & gums. American Dental Association. http://www.ada.org/2624.aspx. Accessed Jan. 28, 2011.