Can Botox Help Burning Mouth Syndrome?


Senior Dental Health Las Vegas NV

Botox And Burning Mouth Syndrome?

Burning mouth syndrome is the medical term for a chronic burning in the mouth without an apparent reason. This discomfort or pain may affect the tongue, gums, lips, inside your cheeks, the roof of your mouth (palate), or general areas of your whole mouth. The burning sensation can be quite severe. It can feel as if you burned the tissues in your mouth.

Burning mouth syndrome generally appears suddenly, but it can also develop slowly over time. The specific cause often is not easy or cannot be determined, which can cause frustration for patients and doctors.

Burning Mouth Syndrome Symptoms

  • A burning sensation that most commonly affects your tongue. This syndrome may also affect your lips, gums, palate(roof of your mouth), throat, or in some cases, your entire mouth.
  • A sensation of dry mouth (also called xerostomia) with increased thirst.
  • Taste changes can include a bitter or metallic taste.
  • Loss of taste.
  • Tingling, stinging, or numbness in your mouth.

Burning mouth syndrome can last for months to years. In some rare instances of burning mouth syndrome, symptoms may suddenly go away on their own or become less frequent. Some of the burning sensations are temporarily relieved during eating or drinking.

Burning mouth syndrome generally does not cause any outward physical changes to your oral tissues.

Burning Mouth Syndrome Causes

While there is no known cause, there is a belief that an issue with the taste and sensory nerves of the peripheral and central nervous systems plays a role. In other cases, burning mouth syndrome can be caused by a medical condition. These may include:

Dry mouth (xerostomia)

which various prescription medications can cause (include antihistamines, high blood pressure medications, and antidepressants), health problems (diabetes and autoimmune disorders), salivary gland function issues, or the side effects of treatment for cancer (chemotherapy and radiation).

Oral Conditions 

such as a fungal infection of the mouth (oral thrush), an inflammatory condition called oral lichen planus, or a condition called geographic tongue that gives the tongue a maplike appearance

Nutrition deficiencies 

can include a lack of iron, zinc, folate (vitamin B-9), thiamin (vitamin B-1), riboflavin (vitamin B-2), pyridoxine (vitamin B-6), and cobalamin (vitamin B-12).

Allergies or reactions to foods 

can include food flavorings, other food additives, fragrances, dyes, or dental materials.

Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) 

enters your mouth from your stomach.

Certain medications

particularly high blood pressure medications

Oral habits

such as tongue thrusting, biting the tip of the tongue, and teeth grinding (bruxism)

Endocrine disorders

such as diabetes or underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism)

Excessive mouth irritation

which may result from overbrushing your tongue, using abrasive toothpaste, overusing mouthwashes, or having too many acidic drinks

Psychological factors

such as anxiety, depression, or stress

Burning Mouth Syndrome Risk Factors

Burning mouth syndrome is not very common. Primarily seen in patients with characteristics below:

  • Female
  • Perimenopausal or Postmenopausal
  • >50 yrs old

Burning mouth syndrome usually begins with no rhyme or reason. However, your risk of developing burning mouth syndrome may increase with the following:

  • Recent illness
  • Presence of a chronic medical disorder such as fibromyalgia, Parkinson’s disease, autoimmune disorders, and neuropathy
  • Previous dental procedures
  • Allergic reactions to food
  • Prescription Medications
  • Traumatic life events
  • Stress
  • Anxiety
  • Depression

Traditional Burning Mouth Syndrome Treatment

Most treatments focus on a dry mouth issue.

Change medications that cause dry mouth.

 Many drugs are known to cause dry mouth. Your doctor may adjust dosages or change to a different medication to give you some relief from burning mouth syndrome.

Recommend products to moisturize your mouth. 

These can include prescription or over-the-counter mouth rinses, artificial saliva, or moisturizers to keep your mouth lubricated. There are mouthwashes explicitly designed for dry mouth. These can consist of Biotene Dry Mouth Oral Rinse or Act Dry Mouth Mouthwash.

Prescribe medication that stimulates saliva. 

Your doctor may prescribe pilocarpine (Salagen) or cevimeline (Evoxac) to stimulate saliva production and relieve dry mouth symptoms.

Protect your teeth. 

To prevent tooth decay from dry mouth, your dentist might fit you for fluoride trays, which you fill with fluoride and wear over your teeth at night.

How Can Botox Help?

Botox has been used for a long time by dentists and doctors for cosmetic purposes. However, recently its use has been expanded to help other conditions, including Temperomandibular Joint Disorder (TMJD) and migraine headaches. A recent study has shed light that it can help burning mouth syndrome.

The very small study finds that Botox “might be an effective, long-lasting, and safe treatment” for the disorder. It is important to temper expectations until more research is performed as this was a small study but very promising.

The research team examined three women and one man (all between 60-80). All four subjects were experiencing burning mouth syndrome on their tongue and lower lip for at least six months. Each of the patients received a total of 16 Botox injections directly into the tongue and lower lip. The researchers found that within 48 hours of injection, all pain and discomfort disappeared. They also reported relief last for a period of between 16-20 weeks.

Botox And Burning Mouth Syndrome

While the study was small, the results were promising. The results could give hope to those suffering from burning mouth syndrome to give them relief long term. It is essential to see your dentist or doctor as soon as symptoms develop so that your dentist can prescribe a course of treatment to limit the pain and discomfort and bring you back to total health. As always, see your dentist regularly for dental examinations and professional cleanings.

Contact Marielaina Perrone DDS at (702) 458-2929 to schedule a no-cost cosmetic consultation appointment if you are ready for a smile makeover. We cannot wait to help you with your smile makeover to create the smile of your dreams in Summerlin, Henderson, and Las Vegas, NV.