What Causes a Bad Taste in the Mouth?

January 7, 2022

Filed under: Uncategorized — guthrieddsteam @ 2:14 pm
man with bad taste in the mouth in Ardmore

Even though you brush and floss, it can be irritating to still have a bad taste in the mouth. Whether it’s metallic, salty, or simply bitter, most people feel it’s distracting when trying to enjoy their daily life. If the sensation persists, this could be a warning sign of some serious oral health concerns. Read on to learn what causes a bad taste in the mouth in Ardmore and why you should visit your dentist to address it directly.

Oral Health Problems

The most essential way to keep your mouth healthy is to maintain a proper dental hygiene routine. Brushing, flossing, and tongue scraping can reduce the risk of cavities, infections, and gum disease as well as to keep your breath fresh. However, if even after these approaches the bitter taste lingers, you may have additional oral issues that need addressing, such as dry mouth.

Dry mouth can occur when your mouth doesn’t produce enough saliva to help wash debris away. Saliva reduces bacteria growth in your mouth, so the less of it you have the more likely your mouth can dry up and allow bacteria to flourish. Naturally, bacteria accumulation in your mouth will cause a bad taste and smell.

Acid Reflux

Sometimes the top muscle of the stomach is too weak to keep stomach acid or bile from elevating into the food pipe, which then irritates the throat and causes a burning feeling. This is known as acid reflux, and can also lead to a bitter taste in the mouth if left untreated.

Anxiety & Stress

Too much anxiety can potentially lead to the stimulation of your body’s stress responses, which includes an altered taste perception. Most people who experience these levels of stress also encounter dry mouth, resulting in a foul taste.

Nerve Damage

One of the more serious possibilities can happen from a neurological reason. Damage to your nerves can be due to head injuries or conditions like dementia, multiple sclerosis, or epilepsy. Like with all senses, your taste buds are immediately connected to the nervous system, and any damage to your nerves can lead to distorted sensory experiences.

Medications & Supplements

In some cases, certain medicines, supplements, or medical treatments can result in a bitter taste in the mouth, either because the medicine itself tastes bad or the chemicals in them seep into the saliva. Some medications and treatments that lead to a foul taste include certain antibiotics, lithium drugs, metal-rich vitamins, and even chemotherapy.

It can be difficult to identify the numerous possible causes for a bad taste in your mouth. Fortunately, your dentist can always help accurately detect the underlying problems and provide the necessary treatment for great oral health!

About the Author

Dr. Jamie Guthrie is a member of the ADA, the Oklahoma Dental Association, and the OMS of Southern Oklahoma Study Club. Awarded the Health Director’s Award of Excellence for Outstanding Medical/Dental Practitioner of the Year in 2002, Dr. Guthrie provides high-quality, comfortable dental treatments and can help you understand your oral health and treatment options. If you wish to know more about what causes a bad taste in the mouth, visit her website or call (580) 224-9600.

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