Mystery Diagnosis

Saturday, July 12, 2014
I woke up with a black tongue today.

No, it wasn't the lighting, and no it wasn't in my head.

My tongue was literally covered in a fuzzy black substance.

I woke up with a strange taste in my mouth, but didn't think much of it except that maybe today it was necessary to brush my teeth before going the bathroom. When your mouth tastes like old wet laundry wrapped in corn husks sometimes it is necessary to make cleaning it your first priority in the morning no matter how bad your bladder calls for relief.

As I opened my mouth to insert my toothbrush I was met with a very disconcerting sight.



I jumped when I saw it, the same way I jump when someone hides in the shower to scare me because they know how paranoid I am of someone being behind the shower curtain. I may have jumped worse actually.

My first thought was mouth cancer. But then I remembered how every time something strange happened to my mouth I thought it was mouth cancer and it never was, so I probably didn't have it now either.

Then I remembered how our fridge had some mold in it (because we had left it in the humid garage for a month as we were waiting to move into our house--after it had been hosed down--yeah, I know, not the brightest thing to do). I had cleaned out the fridge 5 times with bleach before we ever put any food in it, but what if I missed a spot and my food was infected?! What if the black stuff on my tongue was mold?!

"NO NO NO! Gross... nasty... ew... get it off me!! Get it out of my mouth!! AHHHH!"

I turbo brushed my mouth, realizing that as I brushed the black fuzz came off my tongue. It took a good 10 minutes to scrub it off, and I couldn't reach the back of my tongue due to a gag reflect that I was not about to disturb--mold or not.

I calmed down a bit. There was no way this was mold. I am not being logical, I told myself. There has to be a resonable explanation for this.

I went to my room and grabbed my phone.

"I woke up with black fuzz all over my tongue. Please help" I entered in the Google search engine.

The results that came up mentioned a lot of stuff about upset stomachs.

Then it dawned on me. I was feeling sick to my stomach the previous night and had taken two chewable pepto bismols! Could that have anything to do with this? I quickly changed my search...

"Black tongue after chewing pepto bismol"

A ton of webpages popped up listing a black tongue as a side effect of pepto bismol, there were also a bunch of people saying they too had a black tongue the morning after taking chewable pepto bismol!

This HAD to be my answer.

 I researched a bit more and sure enough the brand of pepto I took was notorious for black tongues. I cannot tell you my relief. It was completely harmless... besides being a bit traumatic and I was going to live yet another day!

So my friends, if you want to completely freak someone out, your mother... your sister/brother... your significant other... take a chewable pepto bismol and the next morning you will have a black tongue waiting!

You're welcome.  



To finalize my theory, I had Ash eat a pepto bismol tablet to see if he got a black tongue. Sure enough... he did!


  1. Ha ha! I'm glad it was nothing serious or dangerous. I never knew that about Pepto Bismal! Now, may I highly recommend that trick at Halloween? ;)

    1. Yes!! Go for it!! :) Remember that it has to be the chewable tablets though, I don't think the liquid version gives you a black tongue!