How would you feel when one fine day you get up and bite into a bacon and egg having absolutely no clue as to what are you eating. This is because you are unable to detect any taste. The condition in which a person is unable to grasp any taste while eating is called ‘ageusia’. There are few others who are not completely deprived of the sense of taste. It is just that their ability to sense the basic taste simply gets reduced. This condition is called ‘hypogeusia’. It is also seen that some have difficulty in detecting any particular basic taste. For instance, some cannot detect either sweet or bitter or sour taste present in a dish and are at a total loss, when asked how the food tastes like. So now you can see that loss of taste can manifest in several variations. This article entails few major causes of loss of taste. One should note that while most of these causes are temporary, few among them can cause permanent loss of taste. Moreover, research studies have revealed that loss of taste has consequently led to loss of smell in 80 percent of patients. So, instantly consult your physician and take his advice to find out what is the exact cause of loss of taste in you and try to find out a solution.
Common Causes Of Loss of Taste
- Conditions like common cold, tooth and gum diseases, allergies, ear infections, head injury, tongue infection, tonsil disorder, upper respiratory disorders, nasal and sinus problems and nasal polyps lead to loss of taste. In case you are suffering any of the listed medical conditions, you are likely to experience a loss of taste. However, this is a temporary condition and as soon as the disease gets cured, you would gain back your sense of taste. Even medical conditions like Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and brain tumor can cause loss of taste and the condition can be prolonged.
- If your daily diet is deficient of few essential vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin B12, folate and zinc, you might experience loss of taste. So, include fish, meat and brown rice in your diet. These food items are rich in vitamin B12. While nuts contain a considerable amount of zinc, spinach is a rich source of folate.
- If you have some sort of fungal infection in your tongue, also known as oral thrush or yeast infection, it can lead to loss of taste. Even a kind of mouth infection called glossitis can result in taste disorder.
- If you happen to have an ear infection or have just undergone a middle-ear surgery, your sense of taste is likely to get affected. This is because one of the major nerves of your taste buds travels through the middle ear.
- If you smoke a lot of cigarettes, have a poor oral hygiene or suffer from some dental problem, you are likely to experience loss of taste. Even intake of medicines like antibiotics and radiation therapy for treating cancer in the head or neck can cause loss of taste.
- Exposure to chemicals such as insecticides and pesticides leads to loss of taste, making a person unable to detect any taste whatsoever.
- Besides the above-mentioned causes, ageing is a common stimulating factor for loss of taste. With age, the nerves controlling a person’s sensation of taste and smell begin to degenerate slowly. Beginning after the age of thirty, by the time a person is above seventy years old, he finds it difficult to distinguish between the basic tastes.
- There are few unfortunate lots who are born with the inability to smell. This condition is known as 'congenital anosmia' and those who suffer from it are most likely to be deprived of the sense of smell as well.