Strange taste in the mouth

People often face the problem of a strange or abnormal taste in the mouth. Initially, one might think it’s the food you have been eating, but if this persists the individual experiences an alteration of taste – a strange or abnormal taste in the mouth can be caused by different things. These might include a common cold or even abnormal taste buds. It can also be more serious: numerous conditions or diseases can cause a strange taste in the mouth. Let us discuss some them.

Chalky taste

Some people experience a chalky taste in the mouth. It feels as if they may have eaten a chalk or chewed an antacid. This taste also makes the individual’s mouth dry and makes them feel thirsty. The person experiencing this chalky taste should concentrate and think what he or she has eaten recently? Did he or she take any medication which might have caused the problem? The main factors which can lead to such a taste in the mouth include:

  • pregnancy
  • diseases such as tooth decay, sinus infection, heartburn, acid reflux problems
  • certain medications such as magnesium supplements, vitamin supplements, antihistamines, etc
  • Particular food items such as yogurts, home-made ice cream, protein shakes and other similar food items can cause a chalky taste in the mouth.

Blood taste

People also face the problem of having a taste of blood in the mouth. There are several factors which can cause this problem. Some of these causes can be serious. These causes include nasal congestion, bleeding gums, side effects of medicines, dryness of the mouth, diabetes, heart disease or cancer.

Individuals who have nasal congestion and who are not able to smell the food properly also face the problem of not tasting the food properly as well. Diseases and conditions of the gums, such as gingivitis lead to bleeding gums, eventually altering the taste of the mouth which leads to the constant taste of blood. Similarly, certain medications like prenatal vitamins, hypertension medications and iron supplements can also cause this problem.

People facing such problems should take special care of their oral hygiene. Brushing and flossing the teeth is extremely important in this regard.

Metallic taste

For many reasons, individuals sometimes feel a constant metallic taste in their mouths. This persistent metallic sensation indicates that something is wrong with the oral hygiene. The basic factors which can lead to such a taste are:

  • Pregnancy
  • Dehydration – this occurs when the individual does not consume enough water. Due to the insufficient intake of water, the mouth remains dry and this leads to an alteration in the taste of the mouth.
  • Poor oral health is also a main reason for the metallic taste. It not only leads to dental diseases but also disturbs the taste in the mouth.
  • Dental appliances such as dentures or dental fillings can also cause this problem. Individuals who have such dental appliances fitted in their mouths might also feel a constant metallic sensation.
  • Poor hygiene of the tongue – cleaning and brushing the teeth is important, but likewise, the cleanliness of the tongue should be maintained as well. This could be done by brushing the tongue regularly with a tongue cleaner.
  • Some medications have side-effects which can cause a metallic taste. Usually, due to the necessity of such medications, these cannot be avoided. Such medications include antibiotics such as metronidazole or medications for hypertension, etc.
  • Some food items, particularly pine nuts, also have the potential to cause a metallic taste in the mouth.

Sweet taste

Having a sweet taste in the mouth after eating or drinking a sweet item is natural. But if you constantly feel a sweet taste, it can be quite annoying. This problem does not allow the individual to enjoy other food items properly. The main causes of having a constant sweet taste in the mouth are:

  • Indigestion – individuals who suffer from digestion problems and those who suffer from GERD might experience this problem. With some conditions, the acids in the stomach travel upwards and reach the mouth. This is one of the reasons the individual might have a sweet taste.
  • Pseudomonas infections – this is the infection which is caused by pseudomonas, a bacterium.
  • Neurological disorders – this may be caused when the nervous system does not function perfectly and does not send and receive the right signals to and from the brain.
  • Diabetes

Foul taste

There are numerous causes for a constant foul taste in the mouth. These causes include:

  • Medications – the consumption of certain drugs and medications might cause a foul taste. Particularly, medications with zinc preparations have great potential to cause the problem. Some anti-thyroid and neurological drugs or treatments such as chemotherapy can also lead to this problem.
  • Halitosis – this is the name given to the problem of having bad breath. Persistent halitosis might even alter the taste of the mouth and can create an offensive smell.
  • Oral hygiene is vital in this regard. If proper oral health is not maintained, then numerous problems will begin.
  • Pregnancy
  • Certain diseases have symptoms which can cause a foul taste in the mouth. These include fever, nasal problems, cold, flu, diabetes, throat and gum diseases, cancers, and indigestions.

Bitter taste

There can be many factors which can lead to the development of a constant bitter taste in the mouth. The most significant in this regard is the consumption of pine nuts. It is a very common phenomenon that individuals have a bitter taste in the mouth after eating pine nuts for a short period or even many days. Pine nuts are often used in salads and are also sprinkled over certain dishes. Despite the good taste, they have a tendency to leave a bitter taste in the mouth.

Moreover, some people experience a bitter taste after they eat something sweet. Although strange, this phenomenon is also very common. The basic reason is that the taste buds on the tongue become used to the sweet taste and afterward, if anything else is eaten, the individual will feel a bitter taste or no taste at all.

The causes which can lead to a bitter taste in the mouth include diseases such as diabetes and jaundice. People who have recently had root canal therapy also experience this problem.

Salty taste

Just like any other strange taste, a salty taste can occur due to numerous reasons. These reasons are:

  • Salty taste in the mouth can be caused by dehydration. When the individual does not drink sufficient water, the salivary glands do not produce adequate saliva, this leads to dehydration and also alters the taste in the mouth.
  • Radiotherapy and certain drugs, particularly cancer drugs, can have the effect of altering the taste. This is due to the fact that such treatments and drugs affect the taste buds. 
  • Sinus infections, allergies and excessive production of mucus in the throat can lead to post nasal drips. Due to the drainage of the mucus into the mouth, the taste in the mouth can become salty.
  • When the individual does not maintain proper oral hygiene, various diseases of the teeth and gums can exist due to bacterial infections.

Acidic taste

The basic reason behind having an acid taste in the mouth is Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). With this disease, the acid of the stomach comes up to the esophagus and even to the mouth. One of the most significant symptoms of GERD is heartburn. This disease exists when the barrier between the esophagus and the stomach, the lower esophageal sphincter, does not function properly. Eventually, the taste of the mouth alters as well and the individual experiences an acidic taste. This condition also starts damaging the tooth enamel.

Sometimes, the lower esophageal sphincter might be functioning properly, but, due to overeating or eating too fast, the stomach produces excessive acid and this acid also reaches the mouth, causing an acidic taste.