Yellow tongue image

Causes of Yellow Tongue

The look of a yellow tongue can be rather disconcerting to most and can indicate a genuine medical concern. For others, a yellow tongue is temporary and will recuperate on its own, however it’s constantly essential to determine the reason for yellow tongue to make sure complications don’t develop. Yellow tongue can happen at any age and is quite typical in women who are pregnant as an outcome of hormonal modifications. However simply for safety you need to still see a doctor to ensure it’s nothing major. Here are the common reasons why an individual might develop yellow tongue and some natural home remedy you can try in order to fix the condition.

Black Hairy or Furry Tongue or Yellow Furry Tongue

This is caused by dead skin and food accumulation, and happens frequently when the papillae end up being bigger, swollen, or rough. When this buildup is paired with bacteria or yeast, it can cause the tongue to look yellow or black and hairy. Other signs of yellow furry tongue are bad breath, metal taste, tickling or itching experience, and a hairy look.


The use of some antibiotics can cause yellow tongue due to an imbalance of microorganisms, which causes bacteria or yeast to prosper.

Excess Growth of Bacteria in the Mouth

When bacteria prosper on the tongue it ends up being yellow. This condition is associated with black hairy tongue.

Oral Care Products

Some oral care products like mouthwashes can make the tongue appear yellow or orange. Mouthwashes consisting of oxidizing agents are the greatest perpetrator of this.


A rarer event, a yellow tongue can be a sign of jaundice, which points to a liver problem. The eyes and skin will appear yellow also in jaundice.


A thick yellow coating — specifically at the back of the tongue– could be an early indication of a urinary tract infection (UTI). But the exact same yellow coating to the front is a sign of an upper breathing infection.

Piercing, Tooth Extraction, or Tonsillectomy

A yellow tongue might follow a piercing, tooth extraction, or tonsillectomy as an outcome of papillae inflammation. It’s crucial that you follow proper oral care after these procedures to decrease the risk of infection.

Post-nasal Drainage

Post-nasal drain may cause a yellow and even white tongue, which can likewise cause bad breath. Extreme mucus collects at the back of the nose and throat, and is typically caused by allergies, acid reflux, or swallowing disorders.

Scarlet Fever

Scarlet fever can cause bumps on the tongue together with yellow or white coating.

Other Causes of Yellow-coated Tongue

Geographic tongue, dehydration, dry mouth, fever, acid reflux, mouth breathing, excessive tobacco smoking, medications, tongue irritations caused by hot drinks, poor oral health, soft foods that don’t scrub off the tongue, and foods or candies with yellow dye.

Last modified: March 10, 2018



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