TONGUES can offer clear signs if there's something wrong with your health, a doctor has claimed.
Rheumatology specialist Dr. Siobhan Deshauer has urged Brits to check their mouths for signs of ill-health.
She told her 918,000 YouTube subscribers the size and colour of your tongue can reveal a lot about what's going on inside your body.
Dr. Deshauer states that a healthy tongue should be "pink and have little bumps" on its surface.
If it's a darker colour or smooth it could be a sign of glossitis, caused by a vitamin deficiency.
And any swelling could be because of an allergic reaction or infection, she added.
If the swelling happens slowly it's likely hypothyroidism, which is when the body doesn't make enough of the hormone that regulates the process that turns food into energy.
Or it could be acromegaly, when the body makes too much of a growth hormone.
She added: "It could also be amyloidosis, where amyloid proteins get deposited into your organs, including the tongue, which would make it grow."
A white coating on your tongue is only a problem if it persists - and could signal an oral infection, Dr. Deshauer added.
She continued: "If you brush your tongue, the white coating should go away.
"But if it doesn't, it may mean you have thrush, or oral candidiasis - a yeast infection."
Dr. Deshauer said thrush can happen when someone takes a course of antibiotics.
The tongue can become painful and crackedDr. Siobhan Deshauerrheumatology specialist
The change of bacteria in the mouth "gives yeast an opportunity to grow" which can result in "milk curds of cottage cheese" appearing.
A lack of saliva can also forewarn health issues.
Those who don't have a healthy amount of spit in their mouth - or "salivary pooling" - could be facing Sjogren's syndrome.
She said: "It's an autoimmune disease that can affect the whole body, it causes very dry eyes and very dry mouth.
"Some people with Sjorgren's barely make any saliva. You can just imagine how uncomfortable that would be.
"It causes major issues with their dental health, plus, their tongue can get so dry that it becomes painful and cracked."
A build-up of keratin - a protein which helps form the tissues of the hair, nails, and the outer layer of the skin - can cause a hairy tongue.
But this isn't a serious health issue and can be solved by a thorough clean, she added.
Canker sores, or mouth ulcers, develop in your mouth or at the base of your gums and can be painful.
While most disappear after a couple of weeks, recurring ulcers could suggest lupus, Crohn's disease, herpes, HIV, an allergic reaction, or pemphigoid, a rare skin condition that can cause large blisters to form on the skin.
If the ulcers don't go away after a couple of weeks or you feel a new lump on the tongue, it could be cancer, she added.
"You have to go in and get it checked out by your doctor right away. Tongue cancers don't normally hurt or cause any issues early on, so if you notice something go and check it out to be safe."
It comes after a hair expert lifted the lid on what your hair says about your hormones.
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What your tongue could reveal about your health
A red and smooth tongue
A normal tongue is pink with little bumps. If it's instead red and smooth, this could be a sign the body isn't getting the nutrients it needs.
A white layer on your tongue
Thrush, or oral candidiasis - a yeast infection.
Brushing your tongue will help remove that white coating. I it doesn't, it's likely you are afflicted with a yeast infection.
A dry mouth
Sjogren's syndrome - an autoimmune disease.
It's an autoimmune disease that causes very dry eyes and very dry mouth.
A hairy tongue
For those with unwelcome hair, "a lot of brushing and scraping" is the solution, Dr. Deshauer says.
An ability to make four different tongue movements
A neurological disorder or sleep apnoea
Only five percent of people can perform the four movements: rolling, the clover leaf, folding, and twisting.
If you are one of them, it could signify a neurological issue.