So you were a little too eager and ate your entire meal while it was still piping hot (you should have just waited until the pizza was cold) and now your mouth is flaming with anger. Even when it calms down, your tongue will feel weirdly numb and uncomfortable for days. So what can you do to spread up the healing process?

Unfortunately, you can’t just lather aloe vera on your tongue like it’s sunburnt (well you can, but it will taste and feel absolutely disgusting). Don’t worry. There are plenty of other natural remedies to help sooth and cure your burnt tongue.

1. Chill it down ASAP


Photo by Anna Beckerman

Burning your tongue is just like burning your skin on the stove; you must act quickly. The first thing you should do is cool down your tongue, which will alleviate the pain but will also help it heal more quickly. The best way to do this is by sucking on an ice cube.

If ice cubes are a little too cold, try eating something cool and creamy like yogurt, ice cream, or shaved ice.

2. Gargle, gargle, gargle


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Gargling a cup of salt water after burning your mouth can help the tongue heal quickly. The salt neutralizes acids that may be exasperating your pain and helps draw out infection to heal the tongue.

3. A spoonful of sugar


Photo by Andrea Leelike

It sounds straight out of Mary Poppins, but some swear that letting a spoonful of sugar sit on a freshly burnt tongue will help alleviate pain and cure it in no time. And hey, even if it doesn’t work, who can complain about a spoonful of sugar?

4. Keep it cool


Photo by Alex Shapiro

I shouldn’t have to tell you this but staying away from hot foods for a few hours will help give your tongue the time it needs to fully heal. You should also avoid spicy and acidic foods (like pineapple), which can further irritate the tongue and worsen your pain.

5. Remember to breathe


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In line with making sure your tongue has time to cool off, try breathing through your mouth after burning your tongue. It may seem a little awkward at first, but cool air will do wonders for your mouth.

6. Keep it minty fresh


Photo by Parker Luthman

If you’ve ever taken a sip of water after chewing minty gum, you know how cold that stuff can make your mouth feel. Mint gum has that effect because it contains menthol. This chemical activates the cold-sensing nerves, numbs the area, and reduces inflammation.

Because of these effects, menthol can help a lot with a tongue burn. To apply some menthol to your tongue, try chewing a piece of minty fresh gum, making a refreshing mint smoothing, or sucking on a cough drop.