Menopause Symptoms – Burning Tongue

Symptoms of MenopauseBurning tongue can be one of the most irritating and painful symptoms of Menopause.  It’s just as the name suggests, a burning sensation on the tongue – as if your beverage was too hot and you burned your tongue – except it happens constantly without having to drink anything.  It is usually starts as a perimenopause symptom – meaning it is mostly experienced by women who are going through hormonal transitions, such as the time leading up to menopause.  But it does also affect up to 40% of post-menopausal women.  It can start anywhere between 3 years prior to menopause and 12 years following menopause.

Burning tongue is accompanied by burning pain on the tongue, especially on the tip or back of the tongue and has been known to last for years.  There are typically no signs or lesions on the tongue or mouth.

Estrogen is known to play a part in the make up of the saliva, which researchers believe can cause burning tongue once estrogen levels decrease.  But, perhaps more prominently, estrogen affects the bitter taste buds located at the back of the tongue.  Without adequate levels of estrogen, some women begin to lose their bitter taste buds.  These taste buds are surrounded by a basket-like collection of pain neurons that activate when the taste buds are damaged by lack of estrogen.

Although hormonal imbalance is the primary cuase of burning tongue in women at the age of menopause and older, there are other causes of burning tongue as well.  They are:

Diabetes, Oral Candida (Oral Yeast), Dry mouth, Medications, Nutritional deficiencies,  Gastric acid reflux, Allergies, Dental disease, Noxious oral habits (tongue biting, scalloped tongue), Psychological causes, Chronic infections, Inflammatory disorders, Lingual nerve damage, Tobacco use, and Oral Cancer.

Treatments – The first place to start are lifestyle changes – drinking more water, and avoiding spicy foods, cinnamon, or mint.  The best outcome is usually to combine lifestyle change and alternative medicines – i.e. herbs and supplements, or even acupuncture.  Keep in mind that burning tongue during menopause is associated with hormones, so look for substances that bring a natural balance to the hormonal levels.  An excellent natural remedy, such as a balancing cream, can be found here.

If you still experience burning tongue symptoms for more then several days, consult your doctor.

Note:  Chewing sugar-free gum has been known to be an easy remedy for burning tongue!

I hope you enjoyed this article, next month we will discuss Electric Shocks!

 

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