What Are the Symptoms of Tongue Cancer?

Symptoms of tongue cancer, also called oral cancer, include change in voice, difficulty chewing and swallowing, numbness in the tongue and mouth, unexplained bleeding in the mouth, mouth pain, appearance of bumps on the outer surfaces of tongue and a sore throat. Symptoms of tongue cancer vary widely among individuals, and may quickly worsen. Initial symptoms of tongue cancer mimic those of common colds and tooth problems, according to the Cancer Treatment Centers of America; people experiencing symptoms for several days or weeks should see their doctors for testing and treatment if test results show cancer.

With oral cancer, like many cancers, symptoms typically start in localized areas, then spread. Oral cancer, which includes cancer of the tongue, lip, cheeks, palates, and throat, primarily begins as sores or abnormal spots in the mouth that do not heal or go away, as stated by WebMD.

On the skin, oral cancer appears as sudden swelling or thickening of the mouth cavity or tongue. Lumps and bumps may appear, as can crusty patches along the tongue, inside of the mouth and lips. White or red spots appearing on the cheeks or tongue may indicate cancer too, notes the Cancer Treatment Centers of America. As oral cancer progresses, patients experience numbness or tingling in the jaw and face, difficulty speaking and swallowing, a persistent sore throat, ear pain and weight loss, as reported by WebMD.