On call: Black hairy tongue

On call

Black hairy tongue

Q. The top of my tongue has taken on a dark brown color and a fuzzy look. I don't have a sore throat and I can taste everything, but I'm a bit worried. I am 67, and my only medications are Timoptic and Xalatan — drops for glaucoma. Can you tell me what's wrong and what to do about it?

A. It's likely that you have a condition called black hairy tongue — but it's not as bad as it sounds.

To continue reading this article, you must login.
  • Research health conditions
  • Check your symptoms
  • Prepare for a doctor's visit or test
  • Find the best treatments and procedures for you
  • Explore options for better nutrition and exercise
Learn more about the many benefits and features of joining Harvard Health Online »