Q. I have a pink patch on my tongue. Should I be worried?

Answered by
Dr. Krishna Swaroop Achanta
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Apr 07, 2021

Hi doctor,

I have a pink patch on my tongue. It has been there a week or so, and my general practitioner recommended Nystatin two days ago, but this has not worked. Should I be worried?



Welcome to

It looks like the infection is probably fungal (attachment removed to protect the patient's identity) in origin. In certain cases of tongue inflammation, it will take more time to resolve, or it may also be possible for the infection not to resolve if it is not fungal in origin. Use a regular mouthwash with Chlorhexidine (Peridex and PerioGard) that is antibacterial in origin, and rinse your mouth with hot salt water frequently to get rid of this infection. But as the patch has not subsided past one week, it is better if you consult your local dental surgeon directly as they will prescribe you local antibiotics appropriate after diagnosing it as fungal or an inflammatory condition of your tongue.

The Probable causes:

Aggressive brushing or sudden stimulus to the tongue, improper oral hygiene, general health factors causing localized inflammation.

Differential diagnosis:


Probable diagnosis:


Thank you doctor,

So is there nothing major to worry about? Is this cancer or anything?



Welcome back to

You do not have to worry about the lesion being cancerous as the chances are rare since you have no pain or difficulty in swallowing. Once your dentist examines the lesion and feels that it might be a serious lesion, they will send the sample for biopsy. I suggest you visit your dentist first to ascertain that it is a normal tongue sore or an inflammatory lesion that is not healing fast. Once that is physically examined, you will be relieved as it is only a probable diagnosis by me without examining the texture and examination of the lesion. Meanwhile, you can also use a local gel for mouth ulcers like Mucopain gel (Benzocaine). Your local brands will vary that can be applied on the tongue to relieve inflammation. Vitamins intake for a month in general, along with saltwater rinsing and using mouthwash twice, will definitely help in relieving the discomfort from the sore, if any.

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