Sour Taste in Mouth

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The phenomenon referred as a “sour taste in mouth” is an elusive entity about which a lot can be said, but very little that is conclusive. To sum it up, theories and sufferers propose that it can be causes by foods (obviously), periodontal disease, underlying disease, vitamin deficiencies, neurological disorders, drugs, dry mouth, and even pregnancy. If you have a persistent problem try to work your way through it by considering your own particular circumstances. Food and pregnancy are easy to rule out – if either of these could be the cause, it will probably pass.

Are you taking any drugs regularly? Many drugs have mild to severe side effects including sour taste in mouth. If possible, discontinue the drug or replace it with another alternative and wait to see if the taste problem clears up. if you can’t discontinue or change the drug, you may have to resort to using an oral rinse or mouthwash on a regular basis to keep the problem at a manageable level. If you suspect that the drug is causing dry mouth or gum disease, you may be able to resolve the taste problem by treating the underlying one.

Do you have any underlying disease that might cause a sour taste in mouth? If you have stomach problems, sinus problems, diabetes, respiratory problems, or any one of a host of other medical conditions, you may have found the explanation. Consult your doctor to try to determine if this is the cause. If you don’t have any such conditions, telling your doctor about your sour taste in mouth may help him or her to diagnose a previously unrecognized condition.

A neurological disorder is another possibility. Because the brain interprets smells and tastes based on information sent from our sensory organs, a damaged, stressed or diseased brain can misinterpret and tell us that things smell bad when they really are not offensive, or create a phantom sour taste in mouth that really is not there. Recall that epileptic seizures are often preceded by sensory illusions of smell and vision. Though this is probably an uncommon cause of a persistent unpleasant taste, it’s worth considering and checking out if the taste recurs or remains constant.

Periodontal disease frequently generates a offensive taste in the mouth, although describing it as a sour taste in mouth is unusual. If periodontal disease is associated with dry mouth – and it often is because a lack of saliva can increase the risk of gum disease and tooth decay – taste may be affected simply because there is not enough saliva to keep the taste buds healthy and moist. Again, treat the dry mouth and the bad taste may very well go away.

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R. Drysdale

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  • I had constant sour taste in my mouth for several years. It felt like my teeth was soaked in a corrosive liquid. It felt so thick that I would have recurring dreams in which I struggled to remove food stuck in my teeth. I brush my teeth before bed, there was nothing there. Because of the constant corrosive taste that caused the bad dreams. My doctor said it was from acid reflux even though I do not have any other symptom. I took several different types of heartburn medicine, but they caused actual heartburn. I stopped taking them because they caused chest pain and did not help with sour taste. I was going crazy, because doctors could not do anything and I forgot how a normal mouth supposed feel like. Because of the sour taste I had bad breath as well, which made me afraid to talk.

    Then one day I found the cure by accident. I like yogurt. I try varieties whenever have chance. One day I saw a new Greek yogurt in our grocery store called CABOT. I bought a 2 lb container (10% fat, blue container) and start to eat every day sometime after dinner. On the third day I began to notice my mouth felt much fresher. By the time I finished container in a week, the sour taste was gone in the mornings and came back in later afternoons much milder. I kept eating it for several weeks. It is almost gone now. I still feel a little bit sour taste when I eat spicy food, but compared to what I felt before it was nothing. It must been some kind of bacteria imbalance that caused the sour taste. The Cabot yogurt is very creamy and sour. Its bacteria might be different from the others, because other yogurts did not help at all.

  • I only have a sour mouth after eating bread, tortillas or some types of crackers. It doesn't go away until I drink water or a sip of juice. What's in the bread and crackers that is doing it? I don't have a problem with pasta.

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R. Drysdale

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