Health Tips for Seniors

Examining the Tongue for problems

Examination of the Tongue

The tongue is examined mainly in natural light, and at least partially with forced extension. Grasp the tip of the extended tongue between the thumb and forefinger, (wrapped in a hand-derchief) and pull the tongue forcibly forward and downward for complete exposure.

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1. Examine the tongue for any unusual discoloration. Note any irregular “map-like” gray coating, yellowish-brown
discoloration, bluish discoloration area, or extreme fiery redness to the entire tongue. Discolorations of the tongue
may have definite meanings, some of great significance.

2. Examine the tongue for any white, leathery, and possibly stiffened areas. Such whitened regions are often leuko-

3. Observe closely in the forcibly extended tongue, any sore, ulcer, bleeding or unusual growths visible or touchable. Particularly examine the side, under-surface and back of the tongue as far as possible. Finding of any sore or lesion of the tongue of this nature may mean cancer.

4. Observe the tongue’s ability to move to all regions in all directions. Paralysis in any direction is important.

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