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8 Natural Remedies To Treat Burning Mouth Syndrome


Burning mouth syndrome (BMS) also known as burning tongue syndrome is a condition that causes a burning sensation in the mouth. The burning sensation can be felt on one or more areas of the mouth including lips, gums, tongue, throat, and palate [1] .

The causes of burning mouth syndrome are classified as primary and secondary. Primary cause involves damage to the nerves that are responsible for taste and pain sensations. Secondary causes include underlying medical conditions like diabetes, dry mouth, gastroesophageal reflux disease, anxiety or depression, mouth infections, nutritional deficiencies, etc.

A person suffering from burning mouth syndrome will experience symptoms like a bitter or metallic taste, a burning sensation, increased thirst, difficulty in swallowing, loss of taste, etc. BMS is more common in postmenopausal women, which is about 18 to 33 per cent [2] , [3] .

Generally, the symptoms go away over time but if they are bothering you, you can try some natural remedies to reduce the severity of symptoms.

Natural Remedies To Treat Burning Mouth Syndrome

1. Cold water

To alleviate the burning sensation drink plenty of cold water. The cold ice water will have a numbing effect on the tongue's nerves and will soothe the area.

  • Drink cold water or suck on ice chips throughout the day.

2. Capsaicin rinse

A capsaicin rinse is said to help improve the symptoms when taken orally, according to a study published in the Spanish journal Medicina Oral Patologia Oral y Cirugia Bucal [4] . Capsaicin has a numbing effect on the pain.

  • In a glass of warm water, mix half a teaspoon of cayenne pepper.
  • Rinse your mouth with this solution several times a day.

3. Alpha-lipoic acid

Alpha-lipoic acid is a powerful antioxidant that can help in improving burning mouth syndrome symptoms. According to a study, 600 mg of the alpha-lipoic acid supplement was given to 60 patients with BMS for two months, as a result, there was significantly improved symptoms [5] .

  • Eat foods rich in alpha-lipoic acid like broccoli, carrots, spinach, tomatoes, peas, beetroot, and grass-fed red meat.

4. Aloe vera

Aloe vera gel is a cooling agent which works as an effective remedy for treating burning mouth syndrome. According to a study, topical application of 0.5 ml aloe vera gel combined with tongue protector is found to be effective in reducing the burning and pain sensation of the tongue [6] .

  • Extract the gel from the aloe vera leaf. Apply it on the pain and burning area.
  • Leave it on for 20 minutes and rinse off with cool water.
  • Do this thrice a day.

5. Mint

Mint can aid in lowering the burning sensation in your tongue because it contains antibacterial and cooling properties. Having mint in the form of chewing gum, ice cream or chewing the leaves will work in reducing the BMS symptoms.

6. Vitamin B12

A deficiency in vitamin B12 can lead to burning mouth syndrome, according to a study published in the Journal of Periodontology [7] . Another study showed that vitamin B12 reduced high levels of homocysteine found in patients with burning mouth syndrome [8] .

  • Either foods rich in vitamin B12 like tuna, sardines, mackerel, salmon, raw milk, yogurt, etc.

7. Honey

Honey has soothing and antibacterial properties that can help soothe the burning sensation and reduce pain.

  • Apply a teaspoon of raw organic honey on your tongue and allow it to sit for several minutes before rinsing off with cool water.
  • Do this thrice a day.

8. Zinc-rich foods

According to a study, zinc deficiency has been linked to burning mouth syndrome. 276 patients with BMS were given 14.1 mg zinc supplement per day, and as a result, there was a decrease in pain [9] .

  • Consume foods rich in zinc like pumpkin seeds, grass-fed beef, cashews, cocoa powder, yogurt, chickpeas, etc.

Tips To Manage Burning Mouth Syndrome

  • Avoid hot and spicy foods
  • Avoid acidic foods and drinks
  • Do oil pulling
  • Use white toothpaste and alcohol-free mouthwash
  • Avoid smoking
View Article References
  1. [1] Feller, L., Fourie, J., Bouckaert, M., Khammissa, R. A. G., Ballyram, R., & Lemmer, J. (2017).Burning Mouth Syndrome: Aetiopathogenesis and Principles of Management. Pain Research and Management, 2017, 1–6.
  2. [2] Acharya, S., Carlén, A., Wenneberg, B., Jontell, M., & Hägglin, C. (2017).Clinical characterization of women with burning mouth syndrome in a case-control study. Acta Odontologica Scandinavica, 76(4), 279–286.
  3. [3] Vaidya R. Burning mouth syndrome at menopause: Elusive etiology.J Midlife Health. 2012 Jan-Jun;3(1):3-4.
  4. [4] Silvestre, F. J., Silvestre-Rangil, J., Tamarit-Santafé, C., & Bautista, D. (2011). Application of a capsaicin rinse in the treatment of burning mouth syndrome.Medicina oral, patologia oral y cirugia bucal,17(1), e1–e4.
  5. [5] Palacios-Sánchez, B., Moreno-López, L. A., Cerero-Lapiedra, R., Llamas-Martínez, S., & Esparza-Gómez, G. (2015). Alpha lipoic acid efficacy in burning mouth syndrome. A controlled clinical trial.Medicina oral, patologia oral y cirugia bucal,20(4), e435.
  6. [6] López‐Jornet, P., Camacho‐Alonso, F., & Molino‐Pagan, D. (2013). Prospective, randomized, double‐blind, clinical evaluation of Aloe vera B arbadensis, applied in combination with a tongue protector to treat burning mouth syndrome.Journal of Oral Pathology & Medicine,42(4), 295-301.
  7. [7] Lehman, J. S., Bruce, A. J., & Rogers, R. S. (2006). Atrophic glossitis from vitamin B12 deficiency: a case misdiagnosed as burning mouth disorder.Journal of periodontology,77(12), 2090-2092.
  8. [8] Sun, A., Lin, H. P., Wang, Y. P., Chen, H. M., Cheng, S. J., & Chiang, C. P. (2013). Significant reduction of serum homocysteine level and oral symptoms after different vitamin‐supplement treatments in patients with burning mouth syndrome.Journal of Oral Pathology & Medicine,42(6), 474-479.
  9. [9] Cho, G. S., Han, M. W., Lee, B., Roh, J. L., Choi, S. H., Cho, K. J., ... & Kim, S. Y. (2010). Zinc deficiency may be a cause of burning mouth syndrome as zinc replacement therapy has therapeutic effects.Journal of Oral Pathology & Medicine,39(9), 722-727.

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