A complex, yet mysterious condition, Burning Mouth Syndrome (BMS) is often described as a burning, scalding, or tingling sensation in the mouth that may linger for months at a time. The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research explains that BMS is commonly experienced by adults over the age of 60, and is more frequent in women than in men. Interestingly, there’s no specific test for the condition, and no apparent cure. Thus, treatment hinges on managing pain and other symptoms that might pop up as a result.
While there’s no known cause for burning mouth syndrome, ongoing research suggests a few possibilities, one of which is tied to hormonal changes following menopause. Others include an allergic reaction to materials in dentures, anxiety, depression, stress, nerve damage, auto-immune disease and/or a reaction to a certain toothpaste or mouthwash. Furthermore, there are health conditions that might coincide with BMS, including acid reflux, diabetes, Sjogren’s syndrome, dry mouth, radiation therapy, oral thrush, thyroid disease or deficiencies in vitamin B12, iron and folic acid.
Even so, not every case of BMS will present the above-mentioned concerns, making the syndrome a frustrating one for those experiencing it. Yet, the good news is that by performing a series of tests (blood tests, allergy tests, CT scan and/or MRI, to name a few), a patient can better understand their condition and ensure that their oral health is not at risk. From special mouth rinses to hormone replacement therapy and products to replace saliva, there are a number of options to ease pain from BMS and control its symptoms.
In the meantime, there are a few things that individuals can do to lessen the effects of burning mouth syndrome. First, it’s important to promote saliva production, and this can be done by sucking on ice chips, chewing sugar-free gum and drinking plenty of water. Things to avoid include acidic foods and beverages, alcohol, caffeine, cinnamon and mint, spicy foods and tobacco.
Call Grateful Dental Today
Perhaps you’re suffering from persistent burning and tingling that you feel is part of burning mouth syndrome. As a top patient rated dentist in Marietta, Dr. Leia Porcaro welcomes you to call Grateful Dental today. Our compassionate staff will go above and beyond to make your visit a pleasurable one, with comprehensive screening and assessment to help you advance your oral and overall health.