The UK National Health Service (NHS) is being urged to add the “COVID tongue” to its
official list of coronavirus symptoms. You might be surprised that one in five people with
Covid could get this “covid tongue” and strange mouth ulcers. Why is that?
If you have been to a Chinses medicine practitioner, you might have had the experience
where you were asked to show your tongue. You might feel this is strange. Why did they
look at my tongue? Did I clean it well this morning? But what we are actually looking for
is not whether it is clean or not. It’s the colour, size, shape, cracks, spots and mobility of
the tongue; the colour, location, texture and pattern of the tongue’s coating; and the
sublingual veins. It’s called tongue diagnosis in Chinese medicine.
How much does the tongue tell one’s health condition?
Let’s look at the covid tongue on the left first.
You can see a light red wide tongue with teeth marks on the edge of both sides. Red spots/dots are
located mainly on the front third. There is a moderate slippery white coating especially
at the centre, and partly peeled on the side. This in Chinese medicine shows a bit of
Yang deficiency with dampness (more a watery/running type) inside the body.
Compared to the one in the right photo, I assume that the symptoms of the patient with
the tongue on the left are not as obvious or acute as the right. It could be one of thoses
cases with a fake negative test at first. Or it could be that the patient has been in the
recovery stage. I cannot say for sure because I don’t know any information of the patient
and when the photo was taken. However, reading the tongue would be a good help to
early identify a potential prognosis and its severity.
What about the tongue on the right? Compared the one on the left, the colour of the
tongue is dark red. It doesn’t look as soft and wide as the left one. It doesn’t have teeth
marks on the sides but the coating is thick, yellow and sticky. Peeled spots are seen on
the tip, middle and at the back. This shows damp heat strongly invades the body,
accompanied with blood stasis. The patient probably has problems in digestion as well.
This could be the acute stage with more than moderate symptoms. It could be harder
and take longer to heal.
Above is a brief tongue diagnosis. This is only a part of what tongue viewing can show
us about someone’s health.
If you are interested in getting your tongue viewed, share, DM us or leave a message. If
you suspect you have Covid, please do not use tongue reading as a substite for an
official Covid test.
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