Warning Signs: Sore or Smooth Tongue Could Indicate Vitamin Deficiency

Warning Signs: Sore or Smooth Tongue Could Indicate Vitamin Deficiency

Many people may be unaware that a smooth-looking or sore tongue could potentially be a sign of a vitamin deficiency. The NHS warns that a deficiency in vitamin B12 can manifest in various symptoms, including an inflamed tongue or a tongue that appears smooth due to the stretching of taste buds. According to nutritionist Helen West, this condition, known as glossitis, can cause pain, swelling, and changes in color and shape of the tongue. It can also impact eating and speaking abilities. Studies have shown that a swollen and inflamed tongue with long straight lesions might be an early indication of vitamin B12 deficiency.

Other symptoms associated with vitamin B12 deficiency include rapid breathing, headaches, indigestion, loss of appetite, palpitations, problems with vision, weakness or fatigue, diarrhea, cognitive changes, and a sore or red tongue with mouth ulcers.

Vitamin B12 is primarily found in meat, fish, and dairy products. As a result, individuals who follow a vegan diet are at a higher risk of deficiency if they do not take supplements. Additionally, certain medical conditions such as Crohn’s disease, which causes inflammation in the digestive system, can impact the absorption of vitamin B12.

The NHS emphasizes the importance of seeking treatment for vitamin B12 deficiency as soon as possible. Diagnosing the condition often involves a blood test based on symptoms. While many symptoms improve with treatment, some issues can be irreversible if left untreated. The longer the deficiency goes untreated, the higher the likelihood of permanent damage.

If you experience any of the aforementioned symptoms, it is advisable to consult a healthcare professional and undergo a blood test for a proper diagnosis. Taking action quickly can help prevent further complications and ensure proper treatment for vitamin B12 deficiency.

– NHS (source article)
– Express (nutritionist quote)

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