-Have a white or light-colored border
-Vary in size, shape, and color
-Appear one area, and then move to another area
-Come and go or change very quickly in days, weeks, or months
-Last up to a year
Geographic tongue occurs when parts of the tongue are missing layers of small bumps called papillae. Nobody knows for sure why it happens. However, because geographic tongue tends to run in families, genetics may be a common link.
Some people have mild discomfort or a burning or painful sensation. This is often from sensitivity to substances such as: hot, spicy, or acidic foods, alcohol, cigarette smoke, toothpaste. The condition is self-limited and usually disappears on its own.