Why Does My Mouth Taste Like Metal?

If you've ever had a metallic taste in your mouth, you're not alone. While it's usually nothing to worry yourself about, if it sticks around it is a good idea to speak to a medical professional, as there are various medical reasons as to why your mouth might taste like metal.

Prevention lists pregnancy and poor oral hygiene as two of the more common reasons you can taste metal in your mouth, however, sometimes it actually comes down to what you have ingested. As Dr. Donald Ford, a family medicine physician at the Cleveland Clinic, explained, "Multivitamins may contain high amounts of metals, which cause taste disruption by disrupting ion channels that signal our perception of taste." The same goes for antibiotics and medications that contain copper, calcium, or iron, among others, as well as cancer treatments and smoking, which are made up of chemicals that can affect and change your taste.

Sinus infections can cause a metallic taste in your mouth

A metallic taste in your mouth can also be attributed to a sinus infection. "Swelling and blockage in the salivary ducts can impair salivary flow," explains Ford. "Reduction in saliva output may cause injury to taste buds and their activity." On a more serious level, Ford points out that a metal taste in your mouth could actually indicate a head trauma, which is known to alter your sense of taste and smell.

Dr. Summer Allen, a family medicine physician at the Mayo Clinic, told Prevention that acid reflux is another common reason for tasting metal. "When the digestive acidic enzymes in your stomach intended to help digest food reflux into your throat/back of your mouth, it can damage the taste buds/receptors and lead to the metallic taste," Allen said.

Though some cases are more serious than others, if you're not aware of any underlying medical conditions, such as those listed above, book an appointment with your doctor to check it out.