Question: I have been having a burning sensation on my tongue for the past three months. Do you have any idea what could be causing this?
Dr. Brownstein's Answer:
A burning feeling of the tongue, gums, lips, inside of cheeks, roof of the mouth, or anywhere in the oral cavity is, unfortunately, more common than you would imagine. It is known as burning mouth syndrome.
The pain of burning mouth syndrome (BMS) can be severe. Loss of or change in taste sensation is also associated. In some cases, it can last for a long time and spontaneously resolve without any therapy. Nutritional deficiencies are one cause of burning mouth syndrome. These can include a deficiency in zinc, folic acid, thiamine, riboflavin (vitamin B2), pyridoxine (vitamin B6), or vitamin B12.
I have found vitamin B12 deficiency is the most common nutritional deficiency causing BMS. In this situation, B12 injections have proven helpful. Hormonal imbalances, such as those caused by the onset of menopause, can also cause BMS. Using bioidentical, natural progesterone and estrogen is effective in these cases.
Other common causes include food and environmental allergies. Identifying and eliminating the allergen can help this condition.
Another common cause of burning mouth syndrome is esophageal reflux, where acid comes up into the mouth and burns the oral cavity. I suggest working with a healthcare practitioner who is willing to put his/her detective hat on and search for the underlying cause of your burning mouth syndrome.
Be patient, as you may have to try a few therapies until you see relief.