Essential BMS Management Tips
Commonly referred to as BMS, burning mouth syndrome is a fairly common health problem that affects at least 5% of the American population. This condition is characterized by a burning sensation in the affected individual’s mouth, which can occur suddenly and in all parts of your mouth.
We have all accidentally scolded our mouths a few times while enjoying that hot cup of coffee or sipping a too-hot bowl of soup! And while this often results in short-lived, sharp pain, burning mouth syndrome always leads to a lasting sensation that warrants some type of medical intervention.
However, even though BMS can occur in any part of your mouth, it is more likely to affect the uppermost parts of your tongue, lower lip as well as the roof of the mouth. Besides the above symptoms, BMS patients may also experience a dry gritty feeling in their taste buds and a change in their taste buds.
So, what are the potential causes of burning mouth syndrome?
Currently, the exact cause of BMS is not yet known. However, research tends to show that it is a neuropathic condition. Though not established, it is generally believed that BMS may occur when a person’s nerves fail to transmit or transport information correctly. And this causes a short circuit in the affected individual’s nervous system, ultimately resulting in the patient’s brain refusing to turn off the pain receptors.
Besides the potential damage to the CNS, other possible triggers for burning mouth syndrome may include:
- Nutritional issues including iron, zinc as well as vitamin B12 deficiencies.
- Acid reflux.
- Hormonal imbalances: Women in menopause are increasingly more likely to suffer from BMS compared to those who are not in menopause.
- Mouth candidiasis.
- Existing medical conditions such as diabetes, Sjogren’s syndrome, or even some medications.
- Sensitivity or allergy to dental dentures and certain ingredients in toothpaste or mouthwashes.
- Research also shows that there is a link between anxiety and depression to burning mouth syndrome. But more research is needed to ascertain these findings.
So, how is BMS treated?
Before you start any treatment, your healthcare provider will perform a physical exam and assess your medical history. This information will help your doctor identify the possible cause of your BMS symptoms. What’s more, your doctor could carry out blood tests to look for any nutritional-related issues such as vitamin deficiencies, infections, and underlying health problems such as diabetes or thyroid problems. It is also imperative to note that your doctor will also conduct both allergy tests and a mouth swab to eliminate oral candidiasis as a potential cause of your BMS symptoms.
As you may have guessed, the type of treatment for your BMS symptoms will largely depend on the exact cause of your BMS. And this simply implies that if it is established that yours is triggered by dry mouth, your doctor will recommend specific dry mouth medications to help ease your symptoms. On the other hand, if your burning mouth syndrome is caused by a lack of adequate vitamins in your system, you may be prescribed specific vitamin supplements.
In some patients treating an underlying medical issue identified by the doctor, such as diabetes or thyroid problems should help ease your symptoms. And for those whose BMS symptoms are triggered by psychological problems such as anxiety and depression, medications to manage these conditions may help manage your condition.
What’s more, there are a few proven home remedies that may help with the management of MBS. For example, research shows that drinking water more often and chewing sugarless gum can prove beneficial. And lastly, stopping your tobacco use and avoiding hot, spicy, and acidic foods can help alleviate the severity of your symptoms.
While it can be a bothersome issue that drastically impacts the overall quality of your life, BMS isn’t a serious health problem that should worry you! It is a treatable and manageable condition. However, it’s important that you visit the relevant healthcare provider in your area to help establish the root cause of your BMS symptoms and recommend the most effective treatment option.
If you’d love to see a dentist, we would be happy to assist you. Give Paul Mansky Dental a call today! We are located in Troy, Michigan, and can be reached at (248) 689-5508 and we hope to hear from you soon!