Why do I get peeling in the inner walls of my mouth and tongue?
I am 28 years old. The inner walls of my mouth and tongue have been peeling. What could be possible causes, and what should I do next?
In general, peeling of the tongue and inner walls of the mouth (buccal mucosa) could be related to these causes:
1. Nutritional deficiency
Lack of nutrients like iron, vitamin B12, folate and zinc can result in symptoms of redness, peeling at corners of the mouth and inside the mouth. It would be beneficial to do a blood test to screen for these deficiencies
2. Yeast infection
Candida (a type of yeast) in the mouth and on the tongue will appear as a whitish coat, although minimal peeling is seen. If you are on immune-suppressing medicines or use a steroid-containing inhaler for asthma, yeast can develop in the mouth.
3. Autoimmune blistering diseases
At times, the immune system may be in disarray and attack your tongue and oral cavity, causing peeling and raw skin, or even broken blisters. An example would be pemphigus vulgaris. This needs a dermatologist assessment.
4. Drug allergy reaction
If you have taken a new medicine or drug before the onset of peeling, or have rashes elsewhere on the skin, the new medicine may be a cause of allergy and lead to superficial broken skin in the oral cavity
Do seek help from a dermatologist or dentist for a proper assessment.
Take care and happy holidays!
Dr Ker Khor Jia