Bumps On Tongue

What are Tongue Bumps? What do they look like?

Healthy tongues are usually covered with small bumps known as papillae. Some contain taste buds. Some of them have taste buds. 

Because they are consistent in color and texture, your papillae can be difficult to see. They can become inflamed under certain conditions.

An inflamed papillae may appear larger or raised. These can cause pain, swelling, or unusually sensitive sensations in your tongue.

Reasons for Bumps on the Tongue’s Back

Inflamed tongue bumps can be caused by many things. While most are temporary, there can be serious consequences.

Here are 8 reasons you might have bumps on your tongue.

Irritation or Injury

A tongue injury can cause your tongue to become bumpy or rough. The injury to the tongue can cause it to enlarge, just like other parts of your body.

A swollen lump on your tongue could be a result of an accidental bite. Hot beverages and foods can also cause burns to your tongue. This can lead to bumps that are larger or rougher.

Lie Bumps

TLP, also known as transient lingual paillitis (lie bumps), is a temporary inflammation of the papillae. Lying bumps can cause itching, acute sensitivity, and a burning sensation on the tongue.

While their causes are not known, it is possible that they are caused by stress-related, hormonal and dietary factors. Lie bumps usually disappear on their own.

Canker sores

Canker sores may appear as bumps on the tongue. These are common mouth sores and can appear in your: 2

  • Lips
  • Cheek
  • Tongue

These sores can be red, yellow, or white and can be unpleasant. Most canker sores disappear on their own. Others can be extremely painful and require medical attention.

Squamous Papaloma

The human papillomavirus, HPV, may cause squamous papilloma. You may notice a lump or bump on your tongue.

The condition is generally painless and can either be surgically or laser removed. You can also address other symptoms of HPV on an individual basis.


Glossitis refers to an inflammation condition in which the tongue loses its protective papillae (depapillation). Your tongue may appear red, irritated and smooth.

Gloshitis is also known as geographic tongue. This causes patches of irregularity that appear to migrate across the tongue.

Glossitis can also be caused by:

  • Nutrient or vitamin deficiencies
  • Infections
  • Allergies
  • Hereditary factors
  • Hormonal imbalances

Scarlet Fever

Scarlet fever can be caused by the same bacteria as strep throat. Scarlet fever can be characterized by a reddish, bumpy, or “strawberry tongue” appearance.

Scarlet fever is a common condition seen in children and people who have come into contact. This illness is usually treated with antibiotics by doctors.


Food allergies can cause swelling and itching of your tongue, which can lead to bumps. Anaphylaxis is a condition whereby your whole tongue suddenly swells.

If you have any questions, get immediate help

  • Swollen lips, tongue, or mouth
  • Sudden rashes and hives
  • Breathing difficulties


A bump on the tongue can be a sign that you have tongue cancer in rare cases. A tongue bump on one side of your tongue is more likely to be cancerous than a hardening or painless lump. Any lump or bump that persists for more than a few days should be seen by your doctor.

Oral Thrush

If you have oral thrush, it is a yeast infection that results in creamy white spots on your tongue. 4 Redness and soreness may be a result.

Oral thrush can also be caused by other health conditions, such as:

  • Dry mouth
  • Diabetes
  • HIV
  • Autoimmune diseases
  • Corticosteroids
  • Organ transplantation
  • Cancer

Traumatic Fibroma

Traumatic Fibroma is a pink, smooth growth on the tongue and mouth. Chronic irritation from:

  • Lip biting or cheek biting
  • You can rub a tooth rough.
  • Dentures and other dental prostheses.

Lymphoepithelial Cyst

Lymphoepithelial Cys are rare benign cysts which can occur on the neck and head. 10

This can be caused by the entrapment of or proliferation epithelium and lymphoid tissues. This is often caused by entrapment or proliferation of epithelium in association with lymphoid tissue. 11


Syphilis can lead to serious and even fatal complications. It can also cause sores on the tongue and mouth. 5


Tuberculosis is a disease that germs transmit from one person to another through the air. The disease usually affects the lungs but can also affect the mouth or tongue in some cases 6

Tongue Bumps: What Symptoms Are There?

The tongue can look larger and more swollen if it is inflamed. They can also become white, bright pink or black.

You may also experience tongue bumps when you:

  • When eating or swallowing, there is pain in the tongue or mouth.
  • Cotton-mouth
  • White spots on the inside of the cheeks, tongue or back of the throat.
  • Bleeding from the bumps
  • Lumpiness or swelling of the neck
  • Fever
  • Malaise (sickly feeling)
  • Problems speaking or moving your tongue
  • Taste loss or change

What time to see a doctor for tongue bumps

Most cases of inflammation of the tongue bumps will resolve themselves. If you have any of these symptoms, it is important to seek medical attention.

  • Fever
  • Symptoms that last more than a week
  • Rapidly growing, spreading or bleeding bumps
  • Bumps keep returning after healing
  • Incapacity to eat and drink

Diagnose and Treatment of Tongue Bumps

To determine the cause of your tongue bumps, a doctor will first ask about your medical history. To check for any changes in: 7, a doctor will perform an oral exam.

  • Color
  • Texture
  • Size
  • Abnormalities

To rule out infection or other diseases, your doctor may order blood tests. A doctor may order blood tests to rule out other conditions, such as infection or disease.

Home remedies for tonge bumps

While some causes of tongue bumps may require medical attention. Home remedies are possible. These are:

  • Drinking water is a good option (if you are experiencing pain from drinking, use a straw to get water).
  • Use lukewarm water with a teaspoon salt to rinse your mouth.
  • Avoid spicy/acidic foods and drinks
  • Using topical numbing gels
  • Use over-the-counter pain relief
  • Avoid using mouthwashes that are alcohol-based

What should you do if your Tongue is bumps?

While you are treating your tongue bumps at home, be aware of their size, color, spread, and spread. Call your doctor if you don’t see improvement or your condition worsens.

Tips to Prevent Tongue Bumps

A good oral health can lower the risk of developing cancerous tongue bumps or other forms of tongue bumps. It also helps to prevent lumps from getting infected and painful.

Keep your mouth clean by following these steps:

  • Brush your teeth at least twice daily
  • To remove bacteria from your tongue, use a stainless steel tongue stripper
  • Floss at least once per day
  • It is recommended to visit the dentist at least twice a year.
  • Avoid acidic foods that can irritate your tongue
  • Be careful with alcohol consumption
  • Sugary foods should be avoided
  • After using medication such as inhalers or steroids, rinse your mouth well.


The papillae are tiny bumps on your tongue that are naturally present. They are small and often not noticeable due to their color.

Sometimes, injuries, infections, and other conditions can cause swelling of your papillae, or larger bumps on the tongue. Many of these conditions can be treated quickly and are not serious.

If you are concerned about changes in the appearance or sensitivity of your tongue, talk to your doctor or dentist.