Face / Head / Neck

Burning Mouth Syndrome

What is the Burning Mouth Syndrome?

Burning mouth syndrome (BMS) is a rare and very unpleasant disorder that mostly occurs among women over 50 years of age and is characterized by a burning pain in the oral cavity, even though no abnormalities are found in the mouth.

Causes

The cause of burning mouth syndrome is unknown, although there is some evidence to suggest a possible neuropathic pain involving small fibre neuropathy.

Signs and symptoms

Patients complain of continuous burning pain in their mouth and tongue, the front part of their palate and to a lesser extent the inside of their cheeks. Patients with the syndrome often also complain of a dry mouth and changed sense of taste. The prognosis is unknown, but the complaints may last for years, though they may also decrease spontaneously.

How is Burning Mouth Syndrome diagnosed?

If you have burning mouth syndrome, your mouth will always be thoroughly examined. If you have a burning sensation or abnormalities in your oral cavity or tongue, the doctor will want to exclude the possibility that you have an infection. Burning mouth syndrome may also occur in people with diabetes.

Do I need additional examinations?

  • Diagnostic examination for other non-physical factors important for your pain, have already been done by yourself trough filling out your pain questionnaires.
  • Frequently, no additional examinations are necessary.

What are my treatment possibilities?

Multidisciplinary Treatment

Depending on the cause of your pain, your pain specialist will decide whether or not to embark on physical treatment. Based on the results of the completed pain questionnaire, additional examinations can be carried out and, apart from physical treatment, other methods of treatment will be suggested.

Non-physical Treatments

If the results of your pain questionnaire are abnormal, your pain specialist will offer you one of the non-physical treatments listed below:

Physical Treatments

Medication