Burning Mouth Syndrome | Treatment


How is BMS usually treated?

Treatment will depend on what is causing your mouth pain. If your doctor can identify a specific problem that is causing your symptoms, treating that problem may relieve your pain. For example, symptoms caused by an oral yeast infection called thrush can be treated with an oral antifungal medicine. Saliva replacement products can relieve dry mouth. If you have a nutritional deficiency, your doctor may recommend that you take B vitamins, iron, folate, or zinc supplements.

If your doctor can’t find a cause for your symptoms, he or she will focus on trying to relieve your pain and discomfort. Certain medicines, including some used to treat depression and anxiety, are also used to treat BMS. It is not clear why these medicines help. They may affect how the nerves in your mouth work. Fortunately, 30 percent to 50 percent of people with BMS improve on their own, so you may get better even without treatment.

What can I do to feel better?

The following are tips for relieving the symptoms of BMS:

  • Drink plenty of liquids.
  • Suck on ice chips.
  • Avoid hot, spicy foods.
  • Avoid mouthwashes that contain alcohol.
  • Switch to a different brand of toothpaste.
  • Avoid foods and drinks that are high in acid, like citrus fruits, soda and coffee.
  • Avoid alcohol and tobacco products.


Burning Mouth Syndrome by M Grushka, M.SC., D.D.S., Ph.D., JB Epstein, D.M.D., M.S.D. and M Gorsky, D.M.D. (American Family Physician February 15, 2002, http://www.aafp.org/afp/20020215/615.html)

Written by familydoctor.org editorial staff

Reviewed/Updated: 07/13
Created: 06/04