Why Are You Getting a Metallic Taste in Your Mouth And What to Do About It?

Metallic Taste in Your Mouth

Various factors can cause a bad metallic taste in the mouth, which can happen to the healthiest individuals. However, the bitter taste is also common in people battling several health conditions such as cancer, liver conditions, or kidney disease. If it happens without an underlying medical condition, there is usually no reason to panic.

If you are on medication, a metallic taste in the mouth and fatigue may be the side effects. Most people with prescription drugs tend to complain about such occurrences.

Several other underlying conditions can cause a shift in taste, and understanding the disorder can help you deal with it better. The strange metallic taste in my mouth is known as parageusia. It comes about progressively or at once, only happening if there is a change in how the relevant neurons operate. Our dentist Barrie outlines some of the causes below.

Why Do You Have a Metallic Taste In Your Mouth?

What can cause a metallic taste in my mouth? Understanding how the sense of taste works is critical in finding the answer to this question.

Olfactory sensory neurons control the taste buds, which regulate taste. The same neurons control the sense of smell with the help of nerves. Nerve endings transmit information from the sensory neurons and taste buds to the brain. The responsible side of the brain then processes it and specifies the flavour. The whole process is a complex operation that changes when affected by foreign elements, resulting in the metallic taste. That is why there are medical causes of metallic taste in the mouth.

Oral Hygiene

Poor oral hygiene is one of the common causes of the metallic taste. Failure to brush and floss regularly results in dental problems such as gingivitis and other tooth issues. Some people may notice the change in taste before realizing they have a dental infection. Even then, the metallic taste will clear after treatment.

Brushing the teeth at least twice a day and flossing can prevent dental problems and subsequent metallic taste. Remember to care for your gums as well, and visit a dental clinic regularly for cleaning, checkups, and treatment when necessary.

Prescription Drugs

Prescription drugs such as antibiotics or those used to treat heart or mental conditions can also change the taste in your mouth. When the body absorbs the drugs, they come back out through the saliva and substitute the tang in the mouth. Others like antidepressants end up causing dryness. Examples of prescriptions that can result in medicine metallic taste in the mouth include:

  • Metronidazole, Biaxin, or tetracycline, which are antibiotics
  • Allopurinol, which is a gout drug
  • Captopril and other blood pressure medication
  • Lithium and other psychiatric prescriptions
  • Methazolamide – glaucoma medicine
  • Metformin – treats diabetes
  • Osteoporosis medication

A dry mouth does not just interfere with the sense of taste. It also increases the chances of infections in the mouth.


Sinuses, colds, and other upper respiratory tract infections are the main culprits in changing the sense of taste. Some of their symptoms include sore throat, stuffy or runny nose, or cough. The only remedy is to relieve the infections using popular measures such as getting adequate rest and drinking a lot of fluids. The metallic taste will automatically subside when the infection clears.

Cancer Treatment

Cancer treatments like radiation and chemotherapy can also cause a metallic taste that sometimes manifests as bitterness. This is because the treatment procedures can expose the body to chemicals that alter the communication efficiency of neurons, taste buds, and the brain. The bitter metallic taste in the mouth, also known as chemo mouth, goes away after you stop the therapies.

Some studies have indicated that vitamin D and Zinc can reduce the intensity, but they are not conclusive. Adding sour elements like lemon or vinegar to your diet, consuming cold foods, and using sweeteners or herbs, can also help with the problem by masking the taste better.


If you only experience the metallic taste after eating specific foods, it could be an allergic reaction. Most people are allergic to shellfish and tree nuts but never realize it. The change in taste can be an early sign of anaphylaxis; therefore, getting treatment fast is crucial.

Contact your doctor if you suspect you are having a food allergy reaction. They will tell you measures to take to keep the problem from worsening.


Pregnancy brings a lot of changes to the body, including differences in taste and smell. Therefore, having a metallic taste is very common. It is usually associated with hormonal changes. While some women develop cravings for food items like pickles or ice cream, some develop an improved sense of smell, and others experience a difference in taste. The condition, known as dysgeusia, is more intense during the first trimester. That means the metallic taste may reduce as the pregnancy progresses and disappear completely after delivery.


The taste abnormalities caused by dementia are different from those that occur due to typical old age. The central nervous system communicates with the rest of the body and facilitates how various senses behave. Changes to the CNS caused by disorders or injuries distort the messages from the nervous system. For instance, when the nerves in the brain portion responsible for identifying taste do not send the correct message to the taste buds, the distortion can manifest as a metallic taste in your mouth.

Chemical Exposure

Some chemicals like lead and mercury are dangerous to the body and can also cause a change of taste in the mouth. Avoiding exposure is the best way to deal with them and protect your body.
Lead is harmful to adults and children alike, yet it is readily present in the surrounding. It is mainly found in buildings with lead-based paint, but it is common in older buildings with lead-contaminated dust. As a result, children living in or around such structures have a higher risk of exposure. Adults conducting renovations or dealing with batteries regularly are also more vulnerable. Lead can also contaminate air, water, and soil, posing the same danger of poisoning.

Mercury is common around homes in products like thermometers. In most cases, it reaches residential areas from industrial locations through household items. Long-term and short-term exposure are both dangerous.

Removing the contaminated element from within your vicinity is the first line of defence. However, you should also consult a medical professional if you start exhibiting signs of exposure.

Weird Taste In Your Mouth and Covid-19

Most people who have survived Covid-19 have reported a loss of smell and taste, prompting many experts to agree that those are some of the side effects. Some survivors reveal the taste change as metallic, leading to the question of does Covid-19 leave a bad taste in your mouth?

Under normal circumstances, the metallic taste disappears after you address the underlying condition. With Covid-19, it lingers on after you recover from the virus. It can last for weeks or months after other symptoms vanish.

How to Get Rid of Metallic Taste in Mouth

The unpleasantness of the metallic taste can ruin your mood and keep you from enjoying food. Therefore, it is understandable to want to resolve the issue as soon as possible to regain your normal senses. Before you learn how to get the metallic taste out of the mouth, find out its cause. It makes a big difference.

So, how do I get rid of the metallic taste in my mouth? The cause of the problem determines the treatment option. Exposure to chemicals may require treatment by a medical professional – otherwise, it can clear on its own. For instance, metallic taste from prescription drugs or pregnancy will clear once you stop taking them or give birth.

When it comes to what helps metallic taste in mouth? The following methods can be helpful:

  • Treat dental infections as soon as possible.
  • Brush and floss the teeth at least twice a day, including the tongue. It will also prevent decay and infections.
  • Drink a lot of water to prevent dryness of the mouth. You can also use sugarless gum to keep away infections.
  • Avoid metal utensils because they can intensify the taste. Use ceramic or plastic items instead.
  • Infuse herbs and spices in your meals. You can also marinate your meals with wine or fruit juices. Citrus, lemons, lime juices, or maple syrups can mask the taste.
  • Rinse your mouth with baking soda and warm water solution before eating. It balances the pH levels in the mouth and neutralizes the acid and bitter taste.