Burning mouth syndrome is a rare condition in which patients have a persistent or recurrent feeling of burning in the mouth with no known cause. While the condition is benign, it can be very unpleasant, and there is currently no cure. The symptoms most commonly associated with burning mouth syndrome include a sensation of burning, scalding, or tingling in the mouth. This sensation can occur on a daily basis, and it may persist for months or years. Patients may also experience dry mouth, increased thirst, a bitter or metallic taste in the mouth, and a change in the way food tastes. Burning mouth syndrome is most frequently diagnosed in patients over sixty years old, and it is diagnosed five times more often in women than it is in men. Both doctors and dentists can help in the diagnosis and treatment of burning mouth syndrome.
Some of the most common treatments for burning mouth syndrome are discussed below.
Nerve Pain Blocking Medication
Nerve pain blocking medication may be particularly helpful for many patients with burning mouth syndrome. There are numerous types of medications that reduce nerve pain, and these work by reducing the activity of nerve fibers. Typically, doctors choose to prescribe medications that are also used for the treatment of depression, anxiety, and seizures. These medicines are especially helpful in reducing nerve pain, and patients with burning mouth syndrome are prescribed lower doses of these medicines than they would be prescribed for other conditions. Amitriptyline, nortriptyline doxepin, clonazepam, and gabapentin are commonly prescribed. Although these medications may cause sleepiness, they can generally be taken at night, and this can promote high-quality sleep while reducing daytime drowsiness. When patients first use this class of medication, they should be especially vigilant when driving and operating heavy machinery. They may need to take extra precautions until they know how the medication affects them, and driving immediately after taking one of these medications is not recommended. Patients should also avoid consuming alcohol while on these pills. In addition to prescription options, some patients have found relief through the use of over-the-counter pain remedies such as alpha lipoic acid and topical capsaicin.
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