Tongue Swelling

What Causes Swollen Tongue?

Swollen tongue can have various causes, ranging in severity from 'needs attention' to 'serious'.  Finding the true cause means ruling out or confirming each possibility – in other words, diagnosis.

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  • understand what's happening to your body
  • identify any nutritional deficiencies
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Diagnosis is usually a complex process due to the sheer number of possible causes and related symptoms.  In order to diagnose swollen tongue, we could:

  • Research the topic
  • Find a doctor with the time
  • Use a diagnostic computer system.
The process is the same, whichever method is used.

Step 1: List all Possible Causes

We begin by identifying the disease conditions which have "swollen tongue" as a symptom.  Here are four possibilities:
  • Mercury Toxicity
  • Dehydration
  • Food Allergies
  • Vitamin B12 Need

Step 2: Build a Symptom Checklist

We then identify all possible symptoms and risk factors of each possible cause, and check the ones that apply:
heavily coated tongue
an average-stress lifestyle
chronic nausea
frequent episodes of diarrhea
chronic mild mouth soreness/sores
high diastolic blood pressure
discomfort caused by mold/mustiness
frequent difficulty falling asleep
rapid pulse rate
allergies as a child
above average sneezing frequency
bloating caused by many foods
... and more than 130 others

Step 3: Rule Out or Confirm each Possible Cause

A differential diagnosis of your symptoms and risk factors finds the likely cause of swollen tongue:
Cause Probability Status
Dehydration 93% Confirm
Food Allergies 18% Unlikely
Vitamin B12 Need 1% Ruled out
Mercury Toxicity 0% Ruled out
* This is a simple example to illustrate the process

Arriving at a Correct Diagnosis

The Analyst™ is our online diagnosis tool that learns all about you through a straightforward process of multi-level questioning, providing diagnosis at the end.

If you indicate mouth problems, The Analyst™ will ask further questions including this one:
During the past year, how often have you experienced a swollen or inflamed tongue?
Possible responses:
→ Not at all / don't know
→ Minor swelling a few times in the past year
→ Frequent minor swelling / occasionally major
→ Frequent or constant major swelling
Based on your response to this question, which may indicate slight tongue swelling, tongue swelling or severe tongue swelling, The Analyst™ will consider possibilities such as:
Vitamin B12 Requirement

Glossitis (inflamed tongue) is a possible sign of B12 deficiency.

Concerned or curious about your health?  Try The Analyst™
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