Burning mouth syndrome is a condition in which there is a pain and discomfort around the lips, tongue, and/or the whole mouth. There are some irritating medical conditions that may be difficult to decipher the cause or stimulant. Unfortunately, burning mouth syndrome is one of these conditions that is hard to diagnose. The potential causes range from food, nutritional deficiencies, psychological problems, and/or hormonal problems.
Burning mouth syndrome feels like pins and needles in the mouth. It affects 1% of the general population, but can be as high as 30% amongst post-menopausal women. It can also be experienced amongst people with anxiety and depression, making the detection more complex. There are 3 types of burning mouth syndrome. Type 1, where the pain is absent on waking and develops through the day; Type 2, in which the pain is present day and night. In Type 3, the pain is on and off, with some pain free days.
It can cause a poor or metallic taste in the mouth, or even dry mouth. If burning mouth syndrome (BMS) is related to anxiety or depression, anxiolytic medications have been found to be helpful. In post-menopausal women, hormone therapy may reduce the poor sensation associated with BMS. Folate, iron, and or Vitamin B1, B2, B6, or B12 deficiency can lead to vitamin deficiency anemia and can cause the symptoms associated with the syndrome.
In systemic conditions like diabetes, or hypothyroidism, a high blood sugar can lead to similar symptoms. High blood pressure is also treated by medications that could cause dry mouth and result in an uncomfortable oral cavity. Medical tests are needed to find or eliminate systemic conditions that are related to BMS.
Denture wearing patients may experience thrush (oral candidiasis), yeast infection of the mouth. And thrush is a cause of burning mouth. Ill-fitting dentures and materials used with dentures can irritate the intraoral tissue, leading to BMS symptoms. The metallic taste found sometimes in burning mouth syndrome can be due to gastric reflux.
It is important to take a proper screening including lab tests and/or tissue biopsy to determine the reason for this irritable sensation in the mouth. A comprehensive medical and dental exam should be done.
If you are concerned about any conditions associated with your oral cavity, schedule a dental consultation and find out if the cause can be treated to improve your health. We are located within minutes of downtown Fort Worth, and proudly serve patients from Arlington, Keller and Fort Worth Areas.