ZocdocAnswersWhy is the gum on the bottom of my teeth black ?

Question

Why is the gum on the bottom of my teeth black ?

I never saw it till know that I looked at my teeth and the gums on the bottom of Ma teeth were black..what does that mean?

Answer

Thanks for your question. There are several things that can cause color changes in the mucosa on the inside of your mouth. While some of these are benign and usually lead to no long term side effects or complications, others can be serious and require urgent medical attention. Therefore, it is important that you speak with a doctor. Some of the most common changes occur in the mouths and upper airways of patients who are long time tobacco users. This seems to be a kind of staining that occurs with time and prolonged exposure. While it is not necessarily a sign of cancer, it is a sign of long term inflammation and irritation, and some studies have linked this finding to an increased risk of cancer of the upper aero-digestive tract. Another possibility is a mucosal melanoma, which actually is a cancer and requires urgent treatment to help you recover fully. There are other things as well, but as you can see it is important that you speak with a doctor to make sure that you are treated appropriately. Often, the best person to help with this sort of problem is an ear nose and throat surgeon, AKA ENT AKA otolaryngology-head and neck surgeon. Please speak with your doctor about this.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or (in the United States) 911 immediately. Always seek the advice of your doctor before starting or changing treatment. Medical professionals who provide responses to health-related questions are intended third party beneficiaries with certain rights under Zocdoc’s Terms of Service.