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May 29, 2022
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Why there is a taste of metal in the mouth

Why there is a taste of metal in the mouth

The taste of metal in the mouth is a well-known medical condition called taste perversion. Taste perversion may occur suddenly or gradually and may be acute or chronic. In addition, there are two other disorders of taste: ageia, lack of taste and hypotenus – a decrease in taste sensitivity.

Physiologically, metallic taste and other taste disturbances are manifested by changes in olfactory sensory neurons. Through interaction with taste receptors, olfactory neurons help develop the sense of taste. The nerve endings in your taste buds communicate with sensory neurons in your brain to identify the taste of foods and drinks. As with any mechanism that involves the complex exchange of sense messages with certain parts of the brain, the sense of taste is a combination of various processes. Because of this complexity, things can go wrong.

Five Causes of a Metallic Taste in Your Mouth

1. Chemotherapy

Chemotherapy is the treatment of diseases, especially cancer, using chemicals (usually drugs). Taste disturbance is quite common in patients receiving chemotherapy, with about 56 percent of patients reporting symptoms.

Use herbs and spices that can add more flavor.
Drink acidic drinks like lemon or orange juice.

2. Zinc deficiency

Zinc deficiency is perhaps the main cause of metallic taste in the mouth – and perhaps the most overlooked. Zinc plays an important role in cell division and growth, carbohydrate absorption and wound healing. Researchers estimate that zinc deficiency affects 17 percent of the world’s population, including 35 to 45 percent of adults over age 60.

Deficiencies of vitamins B12 or D can also produce a metallic taste.

3. Medicines

Researchers estimate that more than 300 drugs can cause a metallic taste.

  • Medicines that produce this taste do so through one of six side effects:
  • Blockage of the sinuses.
  • Changes in the nerve pathways of the nervous system.
  • Decreased production of saliva.
  • Inhibition of cell division (mitosis).
  • Cranial nerve disorder.
  • Upper respiratory infection.

By no means is the above list exhaustive. Talk to your doctor.

4. Major diseases

Known medical conditions that can produce a metallic taste in the mouth include Bell’s palsy, cancer, CNS disorders, the common cold, diabetes, ear infections, traumatic brain injury, gingivitis problems, kidney or liver problems, periodontitis, and respiratory or sinus infections.

While any of the conditions above can cause dysgeusia (or parageusia) as a side effect, the most common conditions are those that affect the ear, respiratory system, and central nervous system (CNS). Women in early pregnancy may notice changes in smell and taste, including a metallic taste.

5. Poor oral health

Finally, improper mouth care can leave an unpleasant metallic taste. Dental neglect can lead to gingivitis or periodontitis and eventually gum disease.

An often overlooked aspect of proper oral care is tongue cleansing. Your tongue is inhabited by bacteria that can produce a metallic taste, as well as food particles and other debris. While mouth rinses can kill some surface bacteria and germs, they won’t clear buildup off the surface, which means you have to brush your tongue in order to clean it completely.

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