As a symptom of COVID-19, loss of taste has been reported from several places in the world. Medical condition regarding sense of taste is called dysgeusia. On the occasion, you may not able to taste anything properly.
COVID-19 may not be only medical condition where you loss sense of taste. However there are some other instances also. From otolaryngologists, you may able to know more about this medical condition.
What happens as your sense of taste disappears?
During eating or drinking a food items, chemical information is generally gathered by the taste buds. Later on, the information is sent to your brain. If there is any issue in the pathway then it becomes difficult to get a sense of taste. Proper functioning of the taste buds as well as the nerves is necessary to acknowledge taste. In addition the mouth and tongue should be moist enough to transfer the chemical information
Causes of Dysgeusia
• Viral infection especially COVID-19
• Mouth dries out or nerve function alteration due to medication
• Low level of thyroid and diabetes can alter function of nerve
• Tongue or throat infection that covers the taste buds
Different ways your sense of taste can be affected. It is possible to observe either low tasting ability or complete elimination of tasting ability in the categories such as sour, sweet, salty, savory and bitter. Phantom taste can develop on the occasion too. A taste may be perceived that may not be there at all.
Both the sense of taste and smell is closely connected. Most of the people believe that loss of taste is happening due to loss of ability to smell. Dr. Steward, an otolaryngologist has said “Aroma is a very important component of ‘taste.”
Is it possible to avoid dysgeusia?
Few steps can be taken in order avoid your loss in sense of taste
• Systemic disease must be controlled such as high blood pressure and diabetes. It is better to avoid medication that can affect your sense of taste.
• Tobacco must be avoided to protect your ability to taste
• Dental hygiene should be practiced to eliminate chances of an inflammation
• Stay Hydrated
How to treat dysgeusia?
In order to treat your problem with loss of taste, you should concentrate on the underlying condition. If it is caused by dry mouth or infection then it should be kept under control. Vitamin and Zinc supplements can be taken on the occasion.
Dysgeusia can be first sign of major health concerns which is applicable in case of COVID-19 also. If the issue related to sense of taste is not cured within four to six weeks then it is better to visit a doctor.