There are many things that can make your tongue sore or cause painful tongue bumps to form, including:
- Trauma. Accidentally biting your tongue or scalding it on something straight out of the oven can result in a sore tongue until the damage heals. Grinding or clenching the teeth can also irritate the sides of the tongue and cause it to become painful.
- Smoking. Smoking excessively can irritate your tongue and make it sore.
- Canker sores. Many people will develop these mouth ulcers on the tongue at some point in their life. The cause is unknown, although they can be worse during periods of heightened stress.
- Burning tongue syndrome. Some post-menopausal women develop this syndrome, which makes the tongue feel as if it has been burned.
- Enlarged papillae. If one or more of your taste buds becomes inflamed or irritated, it can swell and form a painful bump on your tongue.
- Certain medical conditions. Medical conditions, including diabetes and anemia, can have a sore tongue as a symptom.
- Oral cancer. Though most sore tongues are nothing to worry about, you should consult a doctor if you have a lump or sore on your tongue that doesn't go away within a week or two. Many oral cancers don't hurt in the early stages, so don't assume a lack of pain means nothing is wrong.
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