What if you woke up one morning, trudged to the bathroom to brush your teeth, and found that the inside of your mouth had turned chalky white? This unsettling circumstance may seem unusual, but it happens to many people every day. Fortunately, Dr. Cindy Flanagan and our Houston dental practice are available to assist you with this and any other oral conditions that come up. We frequently help patients handle a wide variety of dental issues, from preventive care appointments to dental crowns or even tooth whitening. Especially when dealing with an unexpected oral condition, it’s important to understand the potential causes for abnormal symptoms. In the following blog, we explain why the inside of your mouth may be white.
Know the Symptoms
Are you suffering from this seemingly strange issue? You may want to seek Dr. Flanagan’s assistance if:
· You notice that your gums or tongue have turned a white or lighter color. Discoloration may be localized to a few spots, come in patches, or affect all oral tissue. This is the most obvious symptom of this condition.
· You begin to suffer from halitosis (bad breath).
· You experience xerostomia (dry mouth).
· Your oral tissues look or feel irritated or inflamed.
· You notice a foul or different taste in your mouth.
These are the general symptoms associated with having a white mouth.
There are many sources for this symptom. If the inside of your mouth is white, it may be due to:
· Leukoplakia. WebMD explains: “leukoplakia is a white or gray patch that develops on the tongue, the inside of the cheek, or on the floor of the mouth. It is the mouth’s reaction to chronic irritation of the mucous membranes of the mouth…Leukoplakia patches can occur at any time in your life, but it is most common in senior adults.” This is one of the more likely reasons your mouth may appear white.
· Oral thrush. “This is an infection of the mouth caused by Candida yeast,” more likely to occur “if you have diabetes, a weakened immune system from a condition like HIV or AIDS, an iron or vitamin deficiency, or if you wear dentures,” according to Healthline.
· Canker sores. These tiny ulcers may look red or white, giving your mouth a lighter hue.
· Poor oral hygiene. If you fail to properly brush and floss your teeth, a sticky film called plaque may begin to cover not only your enamel, but your oral tissue, giving you bad breath and a whitish-colored mouth.
· Dehydration. Not drinking enough water can dry out your oral tissues, causing them to turn white.
· Tobacco or alcohol use. These habits can increase your risk for any of the above, leading to a white mouth. As Medicine Net points out, “inflammation and whitening of the tongue can also occur due to…environmental irritants such as smoking or other tobacco use,” as well as excess alcohol consumption.
· Fever. An increased temperature may temporarily lead to a white mouth.
These are just a few of the conditions that can cause the inside of your mouth to turn white. Dr. Flanagan would need to assess your mouth to provide a more accurate diagnosis.
If the inside of your mouth becomes white, Dr. Flanagan will examine your oral tissue, discuss your habits with you, and diagnose the source of your symptoms. We will then create a customized treatment plan based on the exact cause of your condition. For example, you may be able to remedy your oral discoloration simply by improving your oral hygiene, or, in more severe cases of leukoplakia, you may need to undergo surgery to remove lesions. In any case, we will guide you through your treatment to help return your mouth to a healthy pink color.
Is the Inside of Your Mouth White?
Dr. Flanagan and our team can help. To learn more and schedule an appointment, contact our Houston dental practice today!
Original Source: http://flanagansmiles.com/restorations/inside-mouth-white/