What Is Burning Mouth Syndrome?
Much like the name indicates, burning mouth syndrome is the medical terminology for the ongoing or recurring burning in the mouth. Typically burning mouth syndrome is termed for this characteristic sensation when no obvious cause for the condition can be identified. Discomfort associated with the condition is not limited and can affect the tongue, gums, lips, inner cheeks, roof of the mouth, or any combination of the areas. The onset of burning mouth syndrome is generally sudden and severe, as is the affected individual has scalded his or her mouth.
Also called scalded mouth syndrome, burning tongue syndrome, burning lips syndrome, stomatodynia and glossodynia, the condition characterized by a number of associated symptoms. Common symptoms include a burning sensation that affects the tongue or any part of the mouth, dry mouth, increased thirst, change in tastes, and loss of taste. The pattern of symptoms typically varies and can be different at different points in the day. While the cause of the condition is largely unknown, commonly accepted causes include an issue with the peripheral or central nervous system, dry mouth, fungal infection, inflammatory condition in the mouth, nutritional deficiency, dentures, allergies, stomach reflex, endocrine disorders, and anxiety.
Natural Burning Tongue Treatment and Remedies for Burning Mouth
Although the cause of the condition is often unidentifiable, treatment options are available. Burning tongue treatment often includes adding supplements to the diet and identifying and eliminating triggers. Alpha lipoic acid or ALA is an effective supplement for treating burning mouth syndrome. Likewise, rinsing the mouth with a mixture of beer and baking soda helps diminish symptoms of the condition. Taking a supplement or lozenge with capsaicin is another treatment option. Additionally eliminating certain foods, particularly starchy ones, as well as other irritating oral hygiene products can help eradicate the condition.
Alpha Lipoic Acid (Ala)
[YEA] 04/23/2010: Debbie from Hadera, Israel: "Burning mouth syndrome
I have suffered terribly from BMS for about 2 years,tried lots of alternative treatments and none helped. I then started taking ALA 600 mg every day. It's gone !!! The only thing that I am not sure of is for how long I need to carry on taking it? Forever?"
04/27/2011: Dean from Huntersville, Nc replies: "I get a burning sensation on the roof of my mouth in the rear twards the enterance of my throat when ever I eat starchy, flowery, foods, like Bisquick, Mrs. Butterworth, or pretty much any pancake mixes.
I have spent my adult life avoiding starchy carbohydrates as I might just as well attatch them to my waistline as that is where they go. I love the taste of breads and potatoes but dropping them from my diet also dropped my weight and waistline.
What causes the burning on the roof of my mouth? I think I remember reading that your mouth is the fastest way for starchy carbs to get into your bloodstream and mess with your sugar. Any input?"
03/20/2012: Wundurbear from Birmingham, Al, Us replies: "Try avoiding gluten containing foods. As soon as I removed gluten from my diet, the burning stopped. It is a hard diet to follow, but anything is better than the BMS."
03/20/2012: Wundurbear from Birmingham, Al, Us replies: "I tried taking ALA. It made my liver enzymes elevate. After 5 years of suffering from BMS, I also had some digestive issues. I had begun to address the digestive issues through research and elimination of certain foods. I came to the conclusion, I was gluten intolerant. After eliminating gluten from my diet, the burning in my mouth completely stopped. After 5 years. And the digestive issues have also ceased. I had gas, bloating, indigestion and just complete discomfort after eating. I was diagnosed with acid reflux and took those treatments. Turns out the gluten allergy was causing it all. Please try this, just to see. I can't tell you how relieved I am!"
06/08/2012: Brian from Campbell, California replies: "I also suffered with BMS for about 2 months. It was getting progressively worse. I could hardly eat or drink anything. Almost couldn't brush my teeth anymore. Did some searching on the web and decided to try 600 mg of Alpha Lipoic Acid 1x day. Also, stopped all oral products except Biotene toothpaste and mouthwash. Dramatic improvement within 2 weeks, and now 5 months out I still do the same regimen daily. I am back to normal. I can eat and drink whatever I did prior to the onset."
Beer Rinse, Baking Soda
[BETTER BUT NOT CURED] 05/21/2012: Peggy from Vidor, Tx - Texas: "I am a 60 year old female in really good health. I have had burning mouth for 6 months now. I have tried all the remedies on the computer. I have found rinsing my mouth with a light beer ( I do not drink) lessens the burn for a while. Also brush with baking soda often helps also. Good luck to you all."Replies
05/22/2012: Margie from Lebanon, Il replies: "Have you have any more luck finding why or how you got Burning tongue and how to quiet it down? Raisins help me..."
Burning Tongue Syndrome Triggers
08/09/2011: Kate from West La, California: "I have never experienced burning mouth or burning tongue syndrome until recently. However, I had read about the terrible problems people have with this condition by perusing different health sites over the years and I figured it out within a day or two. My episode was triggered after I ran out of our holistic toothpaste and grabbed my husband's small travel tube, which was an Arm & Hammer brand. Almost immediately after using it, the right corner of my mouth cracked open and started to bleed. Then my tongue started to feel raw. Not realizing I had just triggered burning tongue, I ate tortilla chips with the hottest salsa imagineable at a restaurant the next day. The hot peppers in the salsa burned the tip of my tongue, causing tiny but immensely painful blisters. I was unable to sleep for the next 2 days. It was sheer torture. After finding burning tongue remedies on Earth Clinic, I started to alkalize with Ted's baking soda remedies. I also swished baking soda and water solution in my mouth several times a day. It took a week to heal and what a painful week it was. During that time I spoke to an oral surgeon friend who told me that this condition appears more frequently for menopausal woman (I am not). He told me that he had a female patient commit suicide after months of having a burning tongue. That's how serious and painful this condition is.
I hope people will look to the chemicals in toothpaste and hot spicy food when they get a burning tongue. I never want to go through that again! Hope this post helps someone, somewhere."Replies
12/18/2011: Marina from Paros, Greece replies: "I recently suffered from BMS, never heard of it before and after reading ALOT about it did the following home remedies. I immediately bought a herbal toothpaste, I drank 1/2 teaspoon of Bicarbonate of Soda (Baking Soda) in a glass of water twice a day to reduce acid, I also took 1 capsule of Spirulina with a glass of water 4 times per day after reading that my body could be lacking iron (along with some other nutrients). I took a capsule of milk thistle to help the liver illiminate toxins, I avoided sugar and other white carbs (white pasta, white rice, cookies, cakes, white flour etc. Etc. ). I also sucked on lumps of coconut oil (from the fridge so it was solid) which IMMEDIATELY eased the symptoms whenever the burning was unbearable (being anti virul, anti bacterial, antisceptic and anti fungal I thought it could do no harm). I also drank a couple of litres of water every day and often squeezed a lemon in too. Amazingly, after fearing that I was going to be living with BMS the rest of my life, it has GONE AWAY - yeah!!! I don't know whether to continue with this regime now it's gone or stick with it - I feel better all round so I may just keep it up. Avoiding the white carbs has also caused me to lose a few unwanted Kgs and I have heaps more energy. Good luck everyone - I can't imagine still having that bloody condition - nightmare."
11/09/2012: Angierose from Dublin, Ireland replies: "I have been suffering from BMS for almost eight years now and have been reading up every article or item I can get my hands on to help educate myself on any possible cures out there. The medical profession seems to be either ignorant of its existence as an ailment or powerless to help. I also suffer from food allergies which I have now read are possibly related and which means I have Type 3 BMS (there are 3 types according to the website medscape). Anyway, have tried everything, every diet, every pill, every alternative therapy... Nothing has helped. I suppose I will end my days with the horrible ailment, I would not wish on my worst enemy. My mother also suffered from it, but not my three sisters, so far. Am trying the coconut oil, solid from the refridgerator which does ease the pain for a short time. Also doing the baking soda and water twice a day combined with lemon juice in water. Somethimes I get some relief, other times no relief.
I am 58 now and although am almost resigned to having this curse forever, I would be most grateful for any help, suggestions anyone out there may have. Thanking you in advance."
11/11/2012: Molosser from Asuncion, Paraguay replies: "Hi. I am a 44 yo male , living in South America. I had the same "Burning Tongue" symptoms for almost a year. I figured, that it had to be a metabolic problem, because I tried almost ALL existing treatments against the most obvious like candida and herpes, with no results.
I cured it with Oregon Grape Root.
I bought empty capsules, size 00, 1 pound of organic Oregon Grape root powder and a encapsulation machine, all on amazon. With my 210 pounds bodyweight, my dosage was 4 times daily 6 capsules. The pain got away at the fourth day of treatment. I halved the dosage after one week and took the capsules two more month. After a year, the problem came back and I used the same method again, with positive results. Before trying this, please adjust the dosage to your bodyweight.
I wish you all the best.
11/29/2012: Liette from Barrie, Ontario replies: "I've had BTS for a few months and it seems to go away when I avoid coffee! I do have food allergies, especially to wheat, dairy and eggs. Sometimes when I eat other types of flours it tingles a bit but for me coffee is the culprit. I don't know if I'm allergic to it. good luck everyone! Liette"
[YEA] 04/16/2009: Erin from Sherwood Park, Alberta: "I was suffering with burning mouth syndrome for over a year. Tried everything, B vitamins, oral rinses etc. My oral pathologist prescribed lozenges with capcasin and it is the only thing that helped. I have also been tested for celiac twice, but tested negative. As of right now my bms has totally disappeared. I was eating oatmeal everyday, but have stopped and my digestive system is better. Next week I am going to start eating oatmeal again everyday to see if the bms comes back."Replies
05/29/2010: Kaz from Burrill Lake, Nsw, Australia replies: "HI I have had BMS for the past six years and as you know it is consuming. I am soooooo over it. I am a 53 year old female and have tried everything you could possibly imagine and spent a small fortune trying to get some kind of relief. Some days are better than others, when it's bad I have actually taken to rubbing bonjela on my gums, tongue etc (baby teething gel).
I am a stress head, post menopausal,why me though? Please help! I also do not eat much red meat. I have had VitB injections and vitamin supplements.
Hoping to hear from you very soon.
[YEA] 01/29/2013: Mar Mimi from Greece, Paros: "Try an elimination diet of all food allergens - I'm in the process of doing a 10 day one for Hashimotos autoimmune disease (Dr Ks diet). I went gluten and coffee free a few weeks back and already my burning mouth syndrome has gone. With the elimination diet you completely clean up your body and then introduce things back in slowly to see what triggers your body - you'll be amazed at other little ailments just dissappearing - my back ache (which I've suffered with for 9 months) has also gone - what's that all about!!! I would recommend elimination diet to anyone suffering with this - it's hard going but well worth it."
[YEA] 12/03/2009: Kate from Newport, Ri: "Hi, I was in graduate school, managing to eat healthy mostly vegetarian home cooked food - but not sleeping enough and extremely stressed and drinking coffee - when my tongue started to burn. In a couple of days it got so bad that it became insanely distracting and spread to my gums and lips. Eating (especially acidic foods) became unbearably uncomfortable. My tongue looked normal and I felt fine - just the usual stressed and tired. I was desperate for a solution and went to a great country doctor near my school. He explained that the cause of Burning Mouth Syndrome (BMS) is hard to determine and it can come and go for years. One theory, he said, was B vitamin or iron deficiency. He asked if I ate red meat and told me to go eat dark green leafy vegetables like kale and chard and red meat 2x a day for three days and see what happens. If no change, I'd go back for some tests. In two days of eating beef and kale the burning was gone. I realized that the stress was causing my digestive system to just not work very well; I wasn't absorbing the vitamins I needed from my food or from the B complex supplement I had been taking. B vitamin supplements don't work, your stressed out system just flushes them out. Whole foods, a healthy digestive system, and calming down a bit are key. This is not the cause/solution for all BMS cases but it is a good start in your self-diagnosis to rule out the possibility of vitamin/mineral deficiency. If you have BMS, you have my sympathy! And I hope you find some relief soon."Replies
05/09/2010: Burnettcj from Cathedral City, Ca replies: "do u still have BMS?"
Eliminate Mouth Wash
03/20/2009: Trudi from Surrey, England: "Burning Mouth Syndrome:
Hi, Can anyone suggest a cure for burning mouth syndrome, I've had this for 7 months, and the pain is unbearable. the only thing that helps calm it down a bit is sugar free gum, but I'm hoping there is an alternative to this."Replies
[YEA] 03/20/2009: Joyce from Joelton, Tn replies: "Hi Trudi, Quite a while back I found my mouth feeling that the entire mucosa was raw, and this might be what you describe as burning mouth. One evening when heading out to join some friends, my mouth started it again when it hadn't bothered me all day long. Then my mind started searching for things that might have caused it. The last thing I had done before leaving home was use Scope mouthwash. Scope tasted better than Listerine and didn't burn like listerine while in the mouth, but when I stopped using Scope mouthwash, I stopped getting the problem. Apparently something in the mouthwash was causing the problem since getting rid of the mouthwash got rid of the problem.
If your entire oral cavity is burning, it is most likely going to be related to the mouthwash because it is more likely to touch all the mucosa."
03/20/2009: Gina from Oslo, Norway replies: "Hi; vitamin B12 deficiency has burning tongue as a symptom. You may check the level with your doctor. B12 is poorly absorbed from supplements; it is better to have an injection."
03/20/2009: Frank from New York, NY replies: "While the sugar free gum may help you temporarily, it contains artificial sweeteners which may be exacerbating (or even causing) your condition. Stop chewing it and see if the symptoms go away. You may also be brushing your teeth with a toothpaste which is giving you an allergic reaction. They put a lot of strong chemicals in toothpastes these days. Did you switch toothpaste brands 7 months ago?
Try swishing with baking soda and water to alkalize the inside of your mouth."
03/21/2009: Rosy from Orlando, Fl replies: "Use plain castile soap to brush your teeth. It could be a flouride sensitivity."
12/11/2010: Tennessee Girl from Kingsport, Tennessee replies: "I have also had BMS for about 1.5years and the only relief is chewing gum ( fruity flavors ) I use sugar free. My DDS is the ony Doctor that knows any such problems. I have seen every type MD from skin allergy to neuroligist. They have treated me with all kinds Medicine which was mentally killing me.... Seizure type.... DDS said it will go away as fast as it came.. I am trying vinegar water now 1 tsp in glass h2o.. Next I will try sodium bicarbonate(baking soda) 1/4 tsp in glass h2o."
12/12/2010: Marilyn from Oswego, Il replies: "I also have BMS. My oral surgeon gave me this and it works. You can email me and I will give you the email address since I cannot place it here
Eliminate Tooth Whitening Toothpaste
[YEA] 10/04/2011: Miss Poker from Edmonton, Alberta, Canada: "Approximately 2 months ago I changed to a whitening toothpaste for a chance at whiter teeth. Succesfully the toothpaste worked right away (I mean the first time I used it), which of course left me suspicious. With no apparent health decline I continued to use this product with much happiness until just a few weeks ago. The initial suspicion about the toothpaste left my thoughts by this time. At first I thought that I was getting a cold because of the mouth irritation. So I took all of the preventative measures I knew, to rid my body of any other cold symptoms. A few days later I still had no signs of a cold. However the mouth burning continued to worsen reaching to my tongue and making it unbearable to brush my teeth. About a week into the intense burning, my mouth started to secrete a foul taste whenever I drank or ate anything. The day I started tasting this metallic/chalky/bitter taste in my mouth, I typed it into google and found a forum full of people with the exact symptoms I had. They claimed that it was 'burning mouth syndrome'. I did a little research and found that a stressor or change is what experts are thinking causes this 'syndrome'. For me I found that within 1 day my symptoms lessened by immediately switching from whitening toothpaste to 'Pro namel'! I believe that some of the things that people are putting in their mouths happen to be toxic to the cells and taste glands. In my case it happened to be a tooth whitening product. However there are many toxins hiding in our bathrooms and kitchens that we don't even realize are there."
06/11/2009: Abbe from Sydney, Australia: "I too think i have Burning Mouth Syndrome, only my burning seems to be really bad under my nose & upper lip as well. My symptoms are- reflux, constipation (for years now), dry eyes, psoriasis, sinus problems, low iron, brittle nails with ridges, flatulance and bloating. I cant seem to stomach vitamin supplements very well and i feel extremely full eating the smallest amounts of carbs.
I have been tested for H. pyroli and it was negative. Today i just had a biopsy of my intestines to see if it could be related to celiac/ gluten sensitivity. I am going to try and eliminate gluten as well as dairy and see if i notice any improvement. Has anyone else experienced similar symptoms to the above?
I feel like im going crazy and i would love to get some relief from this burning sensation in my lips etc! Its almost like a reaction and it seems to get worse throughout the day.."Replies
06/28/2009: Anjum from Miami, Florida replies: "I have been suffering with BMS for 10 years now. Recently about two months back I found Earth Clinic and I decided to do what TED said. He said to try baking soda 1/4 teaspoon in a half glass of water for two weeks that will get rid of burning mouth or burning toungue. It is burning because of acid in mouth (most of are too much acidic) but you need to avoid dairy, sugar ( all even honey and substitues sugars)and white bread and white grains (like white rice) Take any thing that is brown, like wheat bread, brown rice, oatmeal, corn bread is ok. ( unless you are allergic to gluten) because the gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley and oats. Then you can eat only corn and rye and ofcourse gluten free stuff which is really hard to find. Drink lemon (1/2 sqeezed)with one glass of water ( 8 ounce)atleast two times a day when you are taking Soda bicarb in water. Good luck! I really got rid of burning mouth but I still have weired taste in the mouth that I think will go away with time. Sugars are eliminated for atleast 6 months for these conditions to go away. I even got rid of Migrains since I got rid of sugars.
I had my gallbladder removed 18 years ago and I was getting bloating and uneasiness in my stomach also for that I have been taking "Lecithin" just once a day with food. (It helps to break your fats and helps in digestion if you need to take it two times a day with your main meals it is ok too)
Good luck every one. It is not easy to leave all sugar, dairy and white bleached flour ( every food we consume has either suger, dairy or white flour) I am satisfied with this remedy but I also have leg cramps ( heavy legs) I am taking Vitamin E and doing some yogas that are helping me a little but not very much. May be it will take sometime before I can say anything since I just started this yoga a week ago."
08/02/2009: Xlevine from East Brunswick, Nj replies: "I agree with Anjum from Miami regarding baking soda. I use ____baking soda. It's "double action" whatever that is and it tingles somewhat. I take what is less than 1/8 teaspoon and put it directly in my mouth, don't bother to dilute it in water. Several times a day when the problem arises. Then I forget for a few days and the symptoms return. Also noticed that the problem is directly tied to sugar. After eating Italian ices I get a flare up right away. Am I going to give up sweets.... heck no. I discovered baking soda as the remedy because I noticed the problem subsided right after I brushed my teeth with a product that has baking soda (you guess which one). Then I went right to the high octane baking soda. BTW I went to Dr. specializing in this stuff and he didn't diagnosis it properly. He gave me a concoction that sort of worked but in the long run didn't help."
03/16/2012: Minka from Coatesville, Pa replies: "Abbe, I hope you have found relief since posting, but if not it sounds more likely that you suffer from Candida Albicans. An overgrowth of the candida yeast naturally found in the digestive track."
[YEA] 03/20/2012: Wundurbear from Birmingham, Al, Us replies: "I eliminated gluten and my burning mouth completely subsided after less than 2 weeks. I am convinced I am gluten intolerant, because of the many digestive issues that have also subsided. I would rather never eat those things again than have that constant burning in my mouth. after 5 years, relief finally!"
[BETTER BUT NOT CURED] 11/21/2007: Sharon from Okc, Ok: "I wrote a few months ago about burning mouth syndrome. Recently just been diagnosed wheat gluten intolerance or Celiac Disease. I recommend anyone w/ these symptoms to get it checked out. Symptons are frequent diarrhea, weight loss, migranes, abdominal pain, gas, constipation. Symptons are no differant then everyday complaints that this is HARD to diagnosis. I would recommend cutting wheat out for 2 weeks and see if symptons dissappear. I took a stool test at www.enterolab.com. IT is $99.00 but definatley worth knowing if you have an intolerance... my burning mouth has since dissappated... what happens is your body gets inflamed... and everbody symptons are different. google celiac and read about it. thanks"Replies
12/29/2007: Sharon from Okc, OK replies: "A f/u to my previous message(Sharon from OKC)..still was having burning mouth after eliminating wheat for 3-4 wks, diarreah subsided to twice a day but mouth/underneath tongue and sometimes palate of mouth TENDER....had a live blood cell test done..have leaky gut syndrome and yeast in system...doc says it all goes together along w/gluten intolerance..tested high for mercury, doing oxidation/chealation treatments, done about nine...since my mouth still hurts I cant tell if I feel better or not..if that makes sense..Guess I am going to have to call UNCLE and go see a GI doc which I was trying not to do..Im 41 and have never been sick, so I am just beside myself that I cant nip this in the bud. Will keep you posted as I go as there seems to be no quick fix....lots of prayer.."
06/10/2008: Feeny from Tokyo, Japan replies: "I also suffer from a burning (and sometimes bleeding) tongue. I also get these weird looking circular white sores all over my tongue, both on top and underneath. I get them because I am very allergic to (or intolerant of) citric acid (and probably the proteins in practically all fruits). Perhaps this is a possibility you might explore with your doctors. I would suggest that you do extensive research on the subject on your own, too (via the internet and libraries). Sometimes doctors don't go out of their way to find out what's wrong with people because they are often swamped with many patients and grueling schedules."
03/31/2012: Kat from San Antonio, Tx: "I have been suffering with BMS for about a year now and it has taken its toll on me. I am now being treated for GERD and I believe this is all related. I have been given 4 types of prescriptions for the GERD, have seen a dentist, maxiofacial doc, ENT and gastroenterologist, nothing has changed and I cannot seem to get through to these professionals. I am alarmed that they have kept me on the meds for so long without checking my mag levels. I do notice that sugar and bread have an adverse effect on my symptoms and am at the point of only eating proteins/meats and fresh veggies. At the point of taking this into my own hands and doing what is natural. Thanks for the previous feedback. This has helped me and given me hope!"Replies
06/03/2012: Dl from Sat, Tx. Usa. replies: "I too live in Sat. and your post could have been written by me. This tongue and bms has been going on now for about 4mo. I have been to four doctors' and a dentist and they all say it's some kind of allergy symptom. I bought some new tooth paste Dr. Kens in the health food department and it seems to be helping. I was using that new whitening toothpaste, heck doesn't everybody want whiter tooth paste. I am also going to try the baking soda and give up the wheat. This mouth stuff is awful, seems worse in the evening... Let me know any more tips. So glad I found this site!"
06/29/2012: Ashley from Torrington, Ct: "Hello, About 4 months ago, in early March of 2012, I woke up (more than once) feeling as though someone was choking me. At times, I even wondered if I was having a heart attack. It was really scary.
Anyway, after about a week or two of these "episodes", my neck began to ache (all over, front and back) and my throat started to burn. It was awful. Gradually, I began feeling strange sensations in my tongue, which soon changed to a burning feeling- around the sides, at the tip, and even on the top. It was bizarre and terrifying to have such unusual symptoms. Eventually, my tongue even felt very sore, so sore that I talked a little funny at times (b/c I was "babying" my tongue, I think).
While experiencing all of this, between early-March and early-June 2012, I saw my PCP 3x, an ENT, a GI (APRN), and a neck/back specialist. (I also went to the ER once where I was seen, diagnosed with a sore throat, and sent home.) I felt terrible and was so desperate for some relief! (By the way, blood work and neck x-rays were negative.) A few docs, including the ER MD, felt I had a virus (for which I was first given Ibuprofen/Tylenol and later antibiotic treatments), then a few other docs suspected acid reflux. I couldn't believe that acid reflux could cause me to feel so terrible especially since I was unaware of any symptoms! Although I wanted to dismiss reflux as a possible cause, I was feeling desperate, so I tried whatever was recommended, including Maalox (2 tbsp) at bedtime (recommended by 1 ENT), then prescription medication (for reflux) in the A. M. (such as Aciphex), always 1/2 hour before breakfast (recommended by the GI APRN). With time, I felt a little improvement, but not much. So I continued to doubt the whole reflux theory; I spent so much time in fear that I had a serious illness. Why else would I feel so awful with such unusual symptoms?
Finally, my PCP sent me to a second ENT in early/mid June, about three weeks ago (for a second ENT opinion). He listened, answered all of my questions, and majorly eased my fears. While he suggested Burning Mouth Syndrome as a possibility (maybe caused by anxiety/depression, a hormonal imbalance or neuropathy), he too, felt that acid reflux might be the culprit and needed to be ruled out first. (Note: He didn't see signs and symptoms of a vitamin deficiency or thrush or lichen planus, which can cause burning mouth). He just asked me to be patient and follow his recommendations...
He seemed to be really knowledgeable; For one thing, I was impressed as he was the only doctor I saw who knew a considerable amount about BMS! (He said he had seen about 30 cases in 15 years, almost all women.) Anyway, he disagreed with the other ENT I had seen and the GI I had seen re: their treatment recommendations for possible reflux, at least in my case. He said that I had "silent reflux", which explained why I was unaware of any symptoms. He said that Maalox at bedtime wasn't enough, and taking medication in the Â a.m. (I. E. Aciphex) wasn't doing me any good as I was experiencing "silent reflux" at NIGHT. He recommended Zegrid (over the counter, 20 mg) for 4 weeks; he wanted me to take it in the evening rather than the a.m. Again, I was doubtful, wondering if, again, I was just wasting my time and money. (This has gotten quite expensive as I'm sure you can imagine! ) Anyway, it's been almost 3 weeks and I'm feeling MUCH, MUCH better! Seriously, I went from being on the verge of tears (almost nightly) due to tongue discomfort, and gargling with Maalox (and other remedies) multiple times a day to rarely thinking about my tongue (d/t a lack of discomfort) and no gargling (with one exception, which I'll mention in a minute). My pain, on a scale of 1-10 (10 being the worst) went from about an average of 8 to an average of 1 or 2! :) The choking feeling stopped first, then the burning in my throat went away; gradually, the aches and pains in my neck ceased, and finally my tongue burning and soreness subsided! But it did take time (3 weeks and counting) and patience like the doc said.
In short, I felt I just had to write and post on "Earth Clinic" b/c I had visited this website many times while trying to find relief for my burning/painful tongue. Others provided me with some helpful suggestions (and support), so I figured now it's my turn to (hopefully) help others.
In conclusion, here are my thoughts having been through this burning tongue/bottom lip/throat nightmare myself: First of all, while very uncomfortable, don't panic and don't think the worst (like I did). Be persistent (with your doctor), experiment with various remedies (from sucking on ice to gargling with Maalox), and, most importantly, be patient and positive (if at all possible)... Remember, it took 3 months for me to find a doctor with the right "remedy" and then weeks of using the this remedy (20 mg Zegerid OTC in the evening x 28 days) for me to feel ALMOST total relief. Seriously, I never thought I'd see this day (a couple of months back)!
Please note, I started taking folic acid and Vit. B Stress pills (in the A. M.) at about the same time I started taking Zegerid. I also started brushing my teeth (and gargling) with Biotene 2x/day awhile back. I figured I had nothing to lose. While I don't think I have (or ever had) a vitamin deficiency, I started taking vitamins b/c it was suggested by others with BMS symptoms. The ENT said my tongue would be bright red and shiny, which it wasn't, if I was suffering from a vitamin deficency. Just thought I should mention this anyway...
Good Luck to anyone suffering from a burning mouth/tongue. I know it's terrible, but I really think you can find some relief if you're able to get to the root of the problem. It may take awhile and, unfortunately, quite a bit of money, but it can be done, so please don't lose hope! Strive to meet with a doctor familiar with the various causes of BMS as this should save you a lot of time and unnecessary (and costly) doctor visits.
All My Best, Ashley"Replies
09/12/2012: Joann from Nashville, Tn replies: "I read your postings I thought I was reading my own story. I had gotten sick several months back and woke up choking one night unable to breath. I litterally felt like someone was choking me and in a lot of pain. My throat especially the larynx area felt squeezed and my tongue was so swollen I freaked out. For about a week couldn't swollow anything without choking and the pain was awful. I went to the doctor and he changed my medication but I couldn't even swollow the pills w/o choking on them. I didn't notice the change burning sensation (because I couldn't eat anything) until about a week and a half later. Everything I ate, drank, chewed on just hurt. Felt like glass going down my throat. Almost like strep throat except you can't breath and you keep swollowing hoping it will go down. It took a month for my throat to feel decent. Then the burning of the mouth which I had thought was just a side affect of my medication or from whatever had attacked my throat became more noticable. I just happened to get fed up with it this morning because I can't eat anything w/o my mouth being on fire. I'm still suffering from the awful BMS part. So I"m going to try some of these remedies and see if it helps. From the split mouth, to the bumps on my tongue. This has been going on for four months now. Something has to change, it sucks not being able to eat with your family and friends. Wonderful on the wasteline, not so wonderful on the social life."
12/20/2012: Judy from Adelaide, Australia replies: "To Badgerme from Seatte: Thanks so much for your info on BMS. Like you, I have tried literally every thing to elimate this problem. Mine has been ongoing for over 2 1/2 years, driving me totally insane. ENT specialist indicated Menopause and also silent reflux (he had seen this in mainly women only). I will be heading to chemist at lunch time to get these "Zegrid" tablets and give them a go. I am on reflux medication at the moment, 4th day into them, no sign of it mellowing. GGGrrrr........! Can't even enjoy a white wine lately as it burns my tongue soooo much. I will keep in touch in regards to the outcome. I hope I get the relief which you have from taking these tablets. Thanks very much. Will try anything :)"
11/22/2013: Kay from Bala Cynwyd, Pa replies: "To Judy from Australia- did you BMS stop? Your story sounds like mine."
[NAY] 06/27/2010: Denise from St. Paris, Ohio: "I'm 47 and eight months ago I went on diet and lost 40 lbs. Two months ago my tongue turned white and burning tongue started and acid reflux. Also hot flashes returned in a major way. Doctor put me on 1 a day Ranitidine 150 mg for acid reflux and 5 a day Clotrmazole 10 mg Tro R for my tongue. I also take 1 Mega Vita-Min pill, 1 5000 iu D3 (have a low D level), 2 Omega 3 Fish oil 1000mg, 2 B-100 complex, 3 calcium 600mg Vitamin D3,and some different herb to help get rid of acid reflux. I also started taking 1/2 tsp of baking soda with 2 Tbsp lemon juice in 4 ozs of spring water 3 times a day on June 25 2010. My tongue is hurting real bad and i have no energy. Should i stop some of these vitamins? like calcium? I'm at a loss. I'm not using any dairy products but I am drinking soy milk and avoiding wheat products. Any help would greatly be appreciated."Replies
06/28/2010: Denise from St. Paris, Ohio replies: "This Question is for Ted: I'm new to this site and never needed any help but now I have all these problems I posted on 6-27-2010 . I forgot to say I also now take 3 pills of probiotics in morning and evening with all the other pills. Should I stop most of these vitamins? I dont know what pills could be feeding this problem. And should I avoid fruits and sugar? Thank you."
06/28/2010: Bill from San Fernando, Luzon, Philippines replies: "Hi Denise...My thoughts on your problems are that when you went on your crash diet, your body suffered perhaps through a weakened immune system due to this diet, which left the door open to your burning mouth yeast infection as well as helping to cause acid reflux. Your body appears to be too acid for the following reasons:
The drug Clotrimazole is used as an anti-yeast and anti-fungal that your doctor advised for your burning mouth problems. Clotrimrazole is also used in a topical creams against yeast/fungus. Here are the possible side-effects from Clotrimazole when taken orally as Mycelex Troches:
"Itching; nausea; unpleasant mouth sensations; vomiting."
"Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue)."
Taken from Drugs.com
Your use of Clotrimazole might also be aggravating your your mouth yeast condition. Best talk with your doctor about this.
You also seem to be taking very high doses of Calcium with Vit D (1800 mgs). Since most western foods -- from milk to corn flakes to most processed grains -- now contain so much fortified calcium, I would avoid taking calcium supplements altogether unless you have a particular reason for supplementing large doses of calcium as excess calcium tends to cause considerable problems in the body -- causing acidosis as well as other problems like muscular aches, cramps and muscular pains, tremors and heart arrythmia.
In order to help cure your acid condition, the following protocol would be very beneficial:
*Continue to alkalize your body two or three times a day using Ted's Lemon and Baking Soda remedy.
*If you do take calcium, its very to important balance this intake with at least a 1:2 or 1:1 ratio of Magnesium to Calcium. Supplementing Magnesium will help to regulate the calcium in your body and clear the excess, normalizing the calcium levels.
*The best way to find out what minerals you actually need or what excess heavy metals are in your body is to get a simple hair analysis done. Heavy metals can be removed from your body by drinking green tea as well as eating cilantro in your salad 3 times a week.
*Stop taking calcium supplements completely for a month and see if this helps(take magnesium supplements instead).
*Supplement twice a day with 300 mgs Magnesium Chloride or Mag Citrate or Mag Gluconate.This will help balance your hormones and help remove and balance calcium excess.
*You are taking 2 X B-100 complex every day, which is a high daily dose and excessive. If there is no particular reason for this high dosage, try cutting down to one B-100 or B-50 tablet every 2 or 3 days. Excessive levels of Vitamin B-100 complex can cause problems that irritate - such as insomnia, high blood, fatigue, palpitations, etc.
*Take boron tablets, 3 - 6 mgs a day. You can also use 20 mule team borax which is the same but cheaper and just as good(I use it). Just add 1/8 teaspoon of borax to a litre of bottled water and drink this in cups throughout the day. Boron/borax is the ultimate yeast/fungal killer, helps balance the hormones and gets rid of fluoride from your body as well. See this link for dosage - Borax Cures.
*Use the Oral Detox that Ted recommends for your mouth and tongue problems -- which is the 1% Hydrogen peroxide with Borax(anti-yeast, anti-fungal). See Ted's Oral Detox Remedies here.
*Supplement lugol's iodine 2 drops once a day in a glass of water. This is also an anti-fungal and very beneficial for your body. You can also dissolve 1000 mgs Vitamin C in water and add 2 drops of lugols. This will convert the iodine to iodide and there will be no horrible iodine taste.
*Rather than using multivitamins, try using dessicated liver tablets -- these contain every vitamin, mineral and amino acid that you will ever need -- and in its most bio-available form. You can buy these tablets at any weight training shop. See this link.
I had intestinal candida for about 8 years and finally cured this fungal problem using many of these simple remedies above - which will also work well against your mouth yeast problems. But I'm just a little worried, because if you have other symptoms such as psoriasis, eczma, continual bloated feeling, insomnia, continual constipation or loose stools, irregular bowel movement, low appetite, sugar cravings, low energy, athletes foot, recurring UTI -- then these are all symptoms of intestinal candida as far as I'm concerned -- I had most of these symptoms for many years when I had intestinal candida."
07/15/2010: Denise from St. Paris, Ohio replies: "Bill, Thank you! For getting back to me. I didn't go on a crash diet, I just cut out all the junk food and ate real foods and exercised a lot and than developed all these problems. I have stopped the Clotrimazole and my tongue is feeling better. Also, I have stopped taking calcium. I am just taking vitamin D and Fish Oil and 1 B -100 complex and medicine for acid reflux. I am also soaking in a tub for 20 minutes 3 times a week with Epsom salt added. Sorry for the delay to your fast reply, just was not feeling very good. Thanks again! Denise"
07/15/2013: Seren from Kocaeli, Turkey: "Hi, I really need an advice and help about my BMS syndrome. I live in Turkey and I'm 40, female.
I live with this pain in my mouth and acid reflux for 2 years. I'm taking a chemical medicine for the pain and acid reflux but feel that it's not solving my problem. I found you on internet while I was surfing for same people suffer from this kind of pain.
The pain is getting worse after taking of sugar, diary products and some stress factors. These are that I catch in months. I have anxiety as well. I'm looking forward to hear your advice in short time because I just want to live without this pain.
Thank you in advance, Seren"Replies
07/15/2013: Steve from Las Vegas, Nevada replies: "Sounds like your body is acidic. Try 2 TBSP apple cider vinegar and a 1/4 tsp of baking soda in 8oz water 2 or 3 times per day. This will alkalize your body. You should notice a big difference within a few days."
07/16/2013: Mama To Many from Middle, Tennessee, USA replies: "I am seeing some good advice on your situation. The apple cider vinegar should help your reflux problem. You can start small and see how it affects your gastritis, but it may help that, too.
Make sure your toothpaste and mouthwash are free of SLS.
Is your thyroid possibly off? My first (serious) symptom of low thyroid was the my mouth was so very dry and painful and I got sores easily. I take iodoral for this. If I am not taking enough, my mouth symptoms return.
If this is caused by the antibiotics your took, you should try some probiotics or plain (no sugar) yougurt with active cultures in it. This may be soothing on your tongue, too.
~Mama to Many~"
07/16/2013: Seren from Kocaeli, Turkey replies: "Hi Steve, I had burning mouth syndrome after long term therapy with antibiotics. It will be highly accepted if you explain me how I will use 2tbsp apple cider vinegar and 1/4 tsp of backing soda in 8oz water in day. with full stomach or empty.
And I have a gastritis too. Will vinegar will not damage my stomach?
Thanks in advance for your advice. Seren"
07/16/2013: Joy from Battleground, Wash replies: "Try a glass of water half an hour before you eat any food or drink any liquid that has nutrients - to help get the acid under control.
I read that burning mouth can be caused by a mineral imbalance."
07/16/2013: Wendy from Columbus, Oh/USA replies: "Stop eating & drinking ALL dairy and sugar and processed/white foods!
Eat FRESH vegetables, and try juicing. Just search this earthclinic site for more info on this.
Try 2 TBSP apple cider vinegar (organic) and a 1/4 tsp of baking soda in 8oz water 2 or 3 times per day. This will alkalize your body. You should notice a big difference within a few days."
07/17/2013: Kt from The USA replies: "Try 1 TBSP Blackstrap Molasses (BSM) in a glass of warm water."
11/14/2011: Fabio from Placentia, California, United States: "Ted, For the past month the left side of my mouth and tongue feels like it is on fire. It first started out with a metallic taste which disappeared after a few days but the burning sensation has not gone away and the burning sensation feels like it spreads up my face and down my neck. I saw a dentist recently thinking it had something to do with a filling of a tooth but he couldn't find anything wrong and suggested that I probably have some sort of infection and gave me a fluoride mouth wash which hasn't worked. On days my tongue takes on a light yellowish color. I also tend to burp up gas but it's not really a problem. I also have stones in my gallbladder which doesn't bother me too much. I can't exactly pin-point the source of the burning mouth sensation I have. Do you have any suggestions?"Replies
05/06/2012: Susana from Toronto, Ontario, Canada replies: "Hi Fabio from Placentia, Ca. I'm Susana from Toronto, Ontario and I started just like U with the metallic flavor and the burning and tingling so bad on my tongue, lips, palate, face all the way to the back of my right ear it's intolerable, I have to get nerve block injections to get some tiny relief, I have had it for almost 3 years and I am so desperate!!! Have U had any luck trying anything else?? I tried so much already. Thanks"