How to heal cuts on the tongue?

By Patricia | November 13, 2009

A cut tongue is very common and is usually not a very serious condition. The causes for this are varied and usually, these cuts heal on their own. Simply ensuring that you do not aggravate the condition when you have a cut by eating cold stuff and avoiding foods that are hot and spicy can help you deal with this problem effectively.

In this article, we will discuss the causes for cuts on top of the tongue as well cuts on side of tongue, the symptoms, and various home remedy options as well as tongue cut treatment options.


Cuts on the tongue can be anywhere on the tongue, on the top surface, on the underside of the tongue, as well as on the sides of the tongue. Cuts on the tongue can be caused by any of the following reasons.

  • Accidentally biting the tongue.
  • Eating foods that have sharp edges that may injure the tongue.
  • A traumatic injury to the face and mouth, including the tongue.
  • Deficiency in vitamins C and B.
  • Tongue ulcers: Tongue ulcers can also have signs of cuts on the tongue. However, this will not be the only symptom as it usually occurs along with other symptoms such as bumps in the tongue that bleed or have a burning sensation.
  • Fissured tongue: A condition in which the entire tongue has deep cuts or grooves, usually not very painful, and common in people as they age. This is believed to be a hereditary condition, which is usually harmless.
  • Allergic reactions to certain foods can also cause cuts in the mouth.

Infections are the most unlikely reasons for cuts on the tongue. Although cuts on the tongue are uncomfortable, they are nothing to be anxious about as most small cuts need no care into whatsoever.


Cuts in the tongue are easy to diagnose, they are characterized by the following symptoms.

  • A cut or fissure or wound on the tongue
  • Reddening of the area
  • Occasionally, a bit of inflammation
  • Burning sensation
  • Sensitivity to hot and spicy foods
  • Mild discomfort or pain

Treatments and Home Remedies

There are a lot of home remedy treatment options for cuts on the tongue. Listed below are some of the common treatments that are believed to be effective for tongue cuts.

  • Salt water gargles help prevent infection of the cut area.
  • Cold foods such as vegetable juices, ice creams, and cold water can help in soothing the burning and painful tongue.
  • Milk of magnesia is believed to help soothe the cut.
  • Mouth washes also help prevent infection of the cut area; however, they could sting a bit.
  • Baking soda paste is also believed to help soothe the affected area. Make a thin paste of water and baking soda and then apply this paste on the cut in the tongue. It will not only soothe the tongue but will also promote healing.
  • Neem or Indian lilac leaf paste is another home remedy that is believed to be effective in treating cuts on the tongue.
  • If the cuts are due to deficiency, including vitamin B and C rich foods in your diet may be a good idea. Alternatively, taking vitamin supplements can help combat the deficiency.
  • Use of a mixture of water and hydrogen peroxide to rinse the mouth. In eight ounces of water, add a tablespoon of peroxide solution. Rinse your mouth with this. It may sting for a little while, but your tongue will soon start healing.
  • Aloe vera juice can help promote healing of your cut tongue as well.
  • Goldenseal root is considered to be highly effective for treating this condition. Add a few pieces of the root to a glass of water and let it simmer for a few minutes on a low-medium fire. Once the decoction cools, strain it into a glass. This should then be used to rinse the mouth 2-3 times a day.
  • A mixture made from olive oil, aloe vera juice and lemon balm extract can also be applied onto the cuts. This remedy has been known to be effective in healing a bitten or bruised tongue.
  • Butter is also effective when it comes to treating cuts like this. Take a small piece of butter and rub it along the sides of your tongue, do not swallow the butter, but rather let it melt on the tongue. This should be done at least twice a day to aid recovery.
  • Placing an ice cube on the cuts of the tongue can also help in soothing the tongue. You can place an ice cube on your tongue and allow it to melt to have the maximum soothing effect. This can be repeated several times a day to relieve the pain and discomfort that you experience.

On a medical note, a cut in the tongue that lasts between a week and two weeks is nothing to worry about and does not even need any medical intervention. However, adequate care needs to be taken to ensure that the tongue heals quickly without getting worse.

If the cuts on tongue are deep slices that need you to keep your mouth open, the wound may be too deep and may require stitches to close and begin healing. For such wounds, cosmetic surgery as well as rehabilitation may be necessary.


Listed below are some tips to treat tongue cuts.

  • Avoid foods that are hot and spicy
  • Avoid foods that could cause cuts in the tongue
  • Eat a lot of cold or frozen foods
  • Alcohol, cigarettes, caffeine, chocolates and citric fruits should be avoided.
  • If your tongue and inner cheeks are sensitive, try and avoid consuming sour foods or foods that have too much acid in them.

This should help hasten the healing process considerably and avoid any discomfort that a cut tongue often creates. However, if the condition persists for more than two weeks or worsens, it is best to check with a doctor immediately.

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