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A 27-year-old female asked:

I have had geographic tongue pretty much constantly for just over a year. will it ever go away or will it persist like this for the rest of my life?

3 doctor answers10 doctors weighed in
Dr. William Culviner
ENT and Head and Neck Surgery 31 years experience
Probably: It is usually a chronic condition exacerbated by certain food, stress, or hormonal influences in women (menstruating). Foods can include spicy foods, sour foods, citrus, walnuts, eggplant, tomato , sharp cheese, among others. Many of them are high in natural salicylates- found in aspirin. Do a search for foods to avoid online and see if avoidance helps.
Dr. J. Richard Shih
Cosmetic Dentistry 29 years experience
Tongue shape: For most of geographic tongues, they will stay for almost lifetime. Unless it is cause by infection. The shape of tongue might be vary with the time but does not cause any problem or discomfort. If there is unhealed infection or the smooth/rough spots does not move around with the time, please see your dentist/ physician for further evaluation.
Dr. Scott Bobbitt
Dentistry 33 years experience
Possibly: Geographic tongue is not "normal", but rather a benign, usually, but not always painless, inflammatory process that alters normal tongue anatomy. It can come and go in its own. It will go away without treatment, but can and often will return. It is not contagious. Treatment is not necessary unless symptoms of burning develop, contact your dentist.
Dr. Scott Bobbitt
Dentistry 33 years experience
Provided original answer
Sep 30, 2013

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Last updated Jan 5, 2019

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