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Metal taste in the mouth? 10 causes of metallic taste!

Metal taste in the mouth? 10 causes of metallic taste!

Created: January 16, 2023 | Updated: March 25, 2024

A metallic taste in your mouth can be a strange and unpleasant experience. It is relatively common and there are several causes for it, such as gum inflammation or allergies. What other reasons can such an iron taste in your mouth have and what can you do to prevent or remedy it?

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Metallic taste in mouth

A metallic taste in the mouth, or distortion of taste, is also known as parageusie or dysgeusie. It can occur suddenly or occur in a gradual manner and causes an iron- or metal-like taste.

Causes of metallic taste in mouth

The following causes are often associated with a metallic taste in the mouth.

Icing taste due to gum inflammation

Gum inflammation, often the result of poor oral hygiene, can cause bacteria to leave a foul mouth taste.

Vitamin deficiency or excess

Severe vitamin deficiencies, such as B12, can affect the nerves in the mouth, causing a metallic taste. Excessive doses of certain supplements can also cause this.

Allergy

People with hay fever, for example, may experience an iron taste in the mouth during certain seasons, usually because the nasal cavities are inflamed and a person has problems smelling.

Smoking

Frequent smoking disrupts the tasting process, resulting in a metallic taste.

Cold as a cause of metallic taste

Colds affect flavour, also because the nasal cavities then become blocked and the sense of smell is hampered. Sometimes tastes can even disappear completely.

metallic taste in the mouth iron taste

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Medicines or supplements

Some medications have an impact on your taste, for example cold remedies or vitamins high in calcium, iron, copper and zinc.

Stress

People who experience a lot of stress and anxiety may also suffer from iron taste in their mouths. This is because anxiety stimulates the release of stress hormones in the body.

Chemicals

When you inhale harmful chemicals with high concentrations, such as mercury and lead, you can experience various problems, including a metallic taste, skin irritation and nausea.

Pregnancy

Pregnant women may suddenly develop an aversion to certain tastes and smells due to the influence of hormones.

Poor oral hygiene can cause metallic taste in the mouth

When you don’t floss and brush properly, your teeth can become affected, resulting in a foul taste. Moreover, an infection in your mouth can reduce blood flow to your tongue, which also affects your taste.

Symptoms of an iron taste

When you suffer from a metallic taste in your mouth, it is important to identify the cause. Usually it is not something serious, but you may continue to suffer from it. In that case, it may be a symptom of an underlying condition, in which case you should contact your GP. 1

Avoid the taste of iron

Once you are aware of the cause of a metallic taste in your mouth, you can act on it, for instance by taking more vitamins or quitting smoking. In addition, good oral care is also essential, for which we have a wide range of, for example, toothpaste tablets, tartar removers, water flossers, dental floss and oil pulling tongue cleaners. Antibacterial toothpaste and antibacterial mouthwash can also help. This way, you can maintain your oral hygiene. When symptoms persist, though, it is important to consult a doctor.

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Related Trusted Sources

  • 1. Epke, E. M., McClure, S. T., & Lawless, H. T. (2009). Effects of nasal occlusion and oral contact on perception of metallic taste from metal salts. Food Quality and Preference, 20(2), 133–137. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.foodqual.2008.08.001

    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27642233/

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Frequently asked questions

If you suffer from a metallic taste in your mouth, it is important to maintain good oral hygiene. This can include regular flossing, brushing with antibacterial toothpaste and getting enough vitamin intake.

There are several causes for a metallic taste in your mouth, including vitamin deficiency, colds, allergies, exposure to chemicals and poor oral hygiene.

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