Have you ever had the unpleasant sensation that your mouth was on fire, even though you didn’t eat anything spicy? If you feel this way regularly and you’re not a spicy food eater, it’s possible you may have a condition called burning mouth syndrome.
What is Burning Mouth Syndrome?
Burning mouth syndrome is described by patients as the feeling that their mouth is burning or is scalded, without any cause. The front of the mouth, the tip of the tongue or lining around the mouth are where most people get this burning and uncomfortable feeling. Some patients may also experience a decreased ability to taste, along with dry mouth. More women than men experience burning mouth, mostly affecting post-menopausal women, even though it can affect men and women of all ages. It is not a contagious disease and the inside of the mouth and tongue look normal, despite the pain. The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR) characterizes burning mouth syndrome (BMS) as a pain disorder that may be temporary or chronic, lasting from days to years before it disappears. It is a condition that may come and go over a period of time.
As of yet, no cause for burning mouth has been discovered, but it can be diagnosed through process of elimination and through discussion with our Placerville dentists. Blood tests and a mouth culture rule out other potential causes, such as yeast infections, diabetes and allergies. If the test results are normal, then BMS is the likely problem.
Tips for Dealing with Burning Mouth Syndrome
Following these tips may help:
- Avoid irritating substances such as tobacco, spicy food and beverages with a high acid content.
- Reduce or avoid alcohol consumption completely if you find it causes your BMS symptoms to flare up.
- Be aware of medication side effects. Some prescription side effects exacerbate BMS symptoms, such as those that lower blood pressure.
- Let our Placerville dental office know if you have an allergy to metals, like the kind used in dental instruments.
- Use alcohol-free mouth rinses, and then only as needed.
If you are suffering from any kind of oral discomfort, the dentists at the Placerville Dental Group are ready to assist you to find the cause and resolve the problem! Whether it’s pain caused by TMJ syndrome, gum disease, or a condition like BMS, our dentists know how to get you back to smiling. Come by our convenient office in Placerville to schedule an appointment today, use our online consultation request form, or call us at 530-295-8000.