A bitter taste in the mouth appears when you consume something appropriate, such as chicory or black coffee. Having a chronic bitter taste, no matter what you eat or drink, is not normal and indicates one of several health conditions. This flavor suggests that a person has many different diseases, mainly infections and inflammations, as well as injuries. This may be the unfortunate consequence of taking medicines or exposure to environmental factors that interfere with the sensation of the right taste, causing an unpleasant feeling of bitterness. Read on to learn more about the causes of bitterness in your mouth, when you should seek medical help and why you should eliminate this symptom.
Causes of bitterness in the mouth
Bitter taste can be the result of a wide range of medical interventions and even everyday situations. This may occur after eating, after coughing, or occur continuously, depending on the cause. Many different types of prescription or over-the-counter medications interfere with the sensation of the right flavor and cause an unpleasant bitter sensation. This feeling is usually temporary and improves with the removal of the underlying cause.
The consumption of certain foods or the habit of smoking tobacco products can lead to such consequences. Poor dental health and poor hygiene are other potential causes of a sharp aftertaste in the mouth. A person with such hygiene is prone to a variety of infections and diseases (inflammation of the gums or a dental infection, gingivitis, which can cause problems with the aftertaste). It is important to keep your toothbrush clean and to clean your teeth regularly.
The next cause of bad taste is Dysgeusia (Dysgeusia) - a medical term for a weakened taste. This can lead to a violation of the receptors and the feeling of metallic, salty or bitter tastes. Dysgeusia is caused by infections (eg, a cold, flu, sinus infections), inflammation, trauma, or environmental factors. The history of radiation therapy for head and neck cancer can also trigger a bitter taste in the mouth. Sometimes women in the early stages of pregnancy find that their sense of taste seems to have changed. Depending on the cause of the bad taste, there may be other additional symptoms, such as nausea or dry mouth.
When you have a cold, sinus infection, or other illness, the body naturally releases protein produced by various cells in the body to stimulate and mediate inflammation. It is believed that this protein can affect taste buds, causing an increased sensitivity to bitter tastes. Radiation and chemotherapy irritate taste buds, causing many foods, including water, to have a metallic or bitter taste.
One of the most obscure causes of bitterness in the mouth is cedar nut syndrome. This is not an allergy, but some people may react to pine nuts, which leave a bitter or metallic taste in the mouth about 12-48 hours after they are swallowed. Scientists do not quite know why this is happening, but they suspect that this has something to do with pollutants (any chemical used in the process of treating nuts).
Bitterness symptoms in the mouth
An unpleasant sensation in the mouth or tongue has not only a pronounced taste disorder. Since a person has a feeling of bitterness in the mouth, everything, so that he does not eat, has an unpleasant taste (it does not matter that it is a cake, milk, vegetables). However, this is not the only symptom. There are a number of other indicators that indicate that your taste buds are not all right and that there is a slight malfunction in your body.
Other symptoms include:
- burning in the stomach and esophagus a few hours after eating;
- problems with swallowing;
- chronic dry cough;
- drugs and supplements.
When your body has absorbed certain types of drugs, the remainder is excreted in the saliva. In addition, if the substances or additive have bitter or metallic elements, they can leave a bitter taste in the mouth. You should know that there are a number of drugs that cause bitterness. If such a taste appeared after their reception - it is absolutely normal, as a rule, it is not for long. The common cause of this problem is the antibiotic tetracycline and lithium, which is used to treat some mental disorders. Also among them are some heart drugs, vitamins and supplements containing zinc, chromium or copper. There are also certain multivitamins and supplements that can cause a bitter taste in the mouth. They are mainly distinguished by a high content of heavy metals such as zinc and copper. Iron-containing substances leave an unpleasant feeling, but all this will disappear when the means are no longer used.
When is bitterness in the mouth?
Having a bitter taste in your mouth is often not a serious problem, but it can interfere with your daily life and affect your diet. Bitterness in the mouth can be caused by a specific syndrome called “burning mouth syndrome”. This syndrome causes a burning sensation or burn in the mouth, which can be very painful. These symptoms can occur in one part of the mouth or throughout the mucous cavity. It can also cause a dry feeling and a bitter or metallic taste. Burning syndrome occurs in both men and women, especially those who are experiencing or within menopause. Sometimes burning and bitterness in the mouth has no identifiable cause. Doctors suspect that this may be due to damage to the nerves in the mouth. The syndrome is also associated with basic conditions or methods of treating conditions such as: diabetes mellitus; cancer treatment; hormonal changes during menopause. The female hormone estrogen, which fluctuates during pregnancy, can also alter taste buds. Many women report bitter or metallic taste in their mouth when they are pregnant. This is usually resolved a little later or after birth.
One common cause is an insufficient amount of saliva in the mouth. Without proper saliva production, the taste is quite capable of changing. Products may be too bitter, for example, or less salty. In addition, the lack of saliva makes it difficult to swallow or have the ability to speak, and people with this disease may notice that they develop an infection of the gums.
Also, specific bitterness happens in the presence of other diseases and syndromes. For example, if a patient has acid reflux, which occurs when the lower esophageal sphincter is weakened and allows food and acid from the stomach to move back into the esophagus and mouth. The lower esophageal sphincter is a muscle at the bottom, which is a tube that delivers food from the mouth to the stomach. Because it contains digestive acids and enzymes, it can lead to a bitter taste.
What diseases can be associated with a bitter aftertaste?
A bitter feeling in your mouth indicates that you are leading a wrong lifestyle. The following diseases may be the main cause of discomfort:
- gall bladder problems;
- hiatal hernia;
- gastroesophageal reflux;
- stomach cancer;
- peptic ulcer;
- nasal polyps;
- trauma to the mouth or nose;
- use of dental devices such as brackets or braces.
Remember that this is not an exhaustive list, and it is strongly advised to consult with your doctor in case of persistence of such symptoms. They are associated not only with the use of drugs or any temporary interventions, but also indicate a number of serious diseases caused by unhealthy food or frequent use of drinks and tobacco products.
There is substantial evidence that improper perception of taste can trigger serious health problems, even if they were not available before. Doctors have determined that in the absence of treatment, such a problem adversely affects the quality of human life. For example, a stroke damages the taste and completely changes the patient's feeling while eating. Often this can lead to malnutrition and refusal to eat, because a person starts to eat less. This kind of disturbance also provokes the fact that some people salt their food too much to improve the taste, but over time this entails coronary problems. Some patients suffer from depression and stop doing their usual social activities. Therefore, treating the causes of bitter taste in the mouth is very important for improving the quality of life. In many cases, even taking small steps to help stimulate taste buds or improve the taste of food can help manage the feeling of bad taste in the mouth.
Each of us can experience the bitter taste and it happens quite often. Taste should not be a direct cause for concern. Most causes of bitterness are treatable, and a person can deal with this symptom on their own while the doctor diagnoses the cause. As soon as it is found and treatment begins, the taste buds should return to normal, and the bitter taste in the mouth will disappear. For example, if a patient has gastroesophageal reflux, it may be helpful to adopt a healthy lifestyle and dietary measures suitable for reducing the symptoms of the disorder. If the feeling of a bitter mouth is not allowed for a short time, the patient should seek medical attention.