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How to treat burning mouth syndrome

Burning mouth syndrome is a recurrent or persistent burning sensation in the mouth where there is no cause. The burning sensation affects the lips, gums, tongue, inside of the cheeks, palate or roof of the mouth and can affect the whole area of the mouth.

Causes of burning mouth syndrome

  • Primary or idiopathic burning mouth syndrome is a condition where the affected person does not have clinical or lab abnormalities. It is due to problems or damage to sensory and taste nerves of the central or peripheral nervous system.
  • Xerostomia or dry mouth
    burning mouth syndrome

    Painful or burning, tingling and scalding sensations felt in the oral cavity especially in the tongue.

  • Oral conditions such as oral thrush, oral lichen planus and geographic tongue
  • Nutritional deficiencies in zinc, iron, folate or vitamin B-9, riboflavin or vitamin B-2, cobalamine or vitamin B-12 and pyridoxine or B-6.
  • Ill-fitting dentures put plenty of stress on the muscles and tissue of the mouth.
  • Reaction or allergies to food, flavorings, dyes, food additives, fragrances and dental work substances
  • GERD or gastroesophageal reflux disease
  • Medications such as anti-hypertensives
  • Bad oral habits such as tongue biting, tongue thrusting and bruxism or teeth grinding
  • Endocrine disorders such as hypothyroidism and diabetes
  • Irritation on the oral cavity such as over-brushing of the tongue, using strong abrasive toothpaste and excessive use of mouthwash or drinking acidic drinks.
  • Stress, anxiety and depression


  • Painful or burning, tingling and scalding sensations felt in the oral cavity especially in the tongue.
  • Burning sensation in the lips, gums, palate, throat or affect the whole area of the mouth.
  • Numb sensation in the tongue
  • Changes in the taste such as metallic or bitter taste
  • Dryness of the mouth with increase in thirst.
  • Complete loss of taste sensations
  • Can experience burning sensation in the mouth for months or even for years


  • Sip cold water, to give a numbing effect on the nerves in the tongue to soothe the burning sensation and lessen the pain. It also lessens the feeling of dry mouth. Another alternative is sucking on ice chips or eating ice cream or chilled custard is good for the condition.
  • Aloe vera protects the sensitive tissues in the mouth and lessens the dry mouth sensation. Open an aloe vera leaf. Scoop out the gel and apply it directly on the tongue and leave it on for at least 15-20 minutes and then rinse the mouth using cool water. Repeat the process at least 2-3 times every day. Another alternative is rinsing the mouth using aloe vera juice a few times every day.
  • Treat underlying conditions such as infections of the mouth or psychological condition to make burning mouth syndrome disappear.
  • Take the prescribed pain medication to lessen the pain and the inflammation.
  • In a glass filled with lukewarm water, add a spoonful of baking soda, mix them well until baking soda is totally dissolved. Rinse the mouth using the solution to neutralize the acid and cool the burning sensation in the mouth.
  • Perform relaxation techniques such as yoga and meditation to lessen the stress and fast healing of the condition.

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