Recognizing the Difference between Dysgeusia and Ageusia

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Recognizing the Difference between Dysgeusia and Ageusia
Recognizing the Difference between Dysgeusia and Ageusia

Dysgeusia and ageusia are disorders of the sense of taste. The difference between dysgeusia and ageusia can be seen from the tongue's ability to recognize certain tastes. Check out the following article to find out more about the differences between the two

When chewing food, taste buds are stimulated and send messages to the brain. Later, this message is identified by the brain as the taste of the food. Taste cells can recognize five types of taste, namely sweet, sour, bitter, s alty, and umami. If the taste buds are disturbed, then a person may experience dysgeusia or ageusia.

Recognize the Difference between Dysgeusia and Ageusia - Alodokter

Taste disorders, either dysgeusia or ageusia, have a negative effect on a person's quality of life. When a person has a taste disorder, the food that enters the mouth may not have any taste, thereby reducing appetite.

When the appetite decreases, the nutrients that enter the body may not be sufficient. If the lack of nutrition occurs for a long time, then malnutrition may occur, especially in those who suffer from chronic diseases, such as diabetes, stroke, or digestive tract disorders.

Difference of Dysgeusia and Ageusia

Although both are disorders of the sense of taste, dysgeusia and ageusia have significant differences. Here is the explanation:


A person who suffers from dysgeusia will generally complain of a metallic, bitter, s alty, sweet, or bad taste in the mouth when consuming food and drinks. In fact, this bad taste can appear when you are not eating anything.

This dysgeusia condition can of course affect the enjoyment of eating, which will also affect the entry of nutrients into the body. In addition, dysgeusia is also generally accompanied by several symptoms, such as nasal congestion, bad breath, nausea, stomach pain, headache, dry mouth, fever, and sore throat

There are various causes of dysgeusia, one of which is infectious disease, whether caused by bacteria, viruses, or fungi. In fact, this disturbance in the sense of taste is one of the symptoms of COVID-19 infection. Not only infectious diseases, dysgeusia can also occur due to the following conditions:

  • Vitamin and mineral deficiency, usually occurs in someone who is deficient in B vitamins and zinc
  • Are taking certain medications, such as antidepressants, antibiotics, muscle relaxants, antihypertensives, thyroid medications, and chemotherapy drugs
  • Experiencing chronic diseases, such as Parkinson's disease, dementia, diabetes, stroke, and nerve damage
  • Being pregnant, usually caused by changes in hormone levels
  • Inflammation of the tongue
  • Exposure to chemicals that can damage the sense of taste, such as pesticides, cosmetics, detergents, and industrial chemicals
  • Active smokers, because tobacco products contain chemicals that can affect the sense of taste

Treatment of dysgeusia varies, depending on the cause. If your dysgeusia is caused by pregnancy, it will usually go away after the first trimester has passed. Meanwhile, if it is caused by a lack of vitamins and minerals, then the consumption of certain supplements can help overcome dysgeusia.

The condition of dysgeusia certainly affects the taste of food that goes into the mouth. So that the nutrients needed by the body are still fulfilled without feeling tormented, avoid consuming foods that consist of many flavors, and avoid spicy, sweet, and preservative foods.


If a person with dysgeusia complains of a bitter taste or an unpleasant taste in the sense of taste, the person with ageusia may not feel any taste or a complete loss of taste buds.

This condition can be experienced by all age groups, but is more common in adults over the age of 50.

Besides losing taste buds so you can't feel anything, ageusia can also be accompanied by various symptoms, ranging from high blood pressure (hypertension), allergic reactions, oral he alth problems, to nasal congestion.

Ageusia is a rare and non-life-threatening case. However, this condition can cause various he alth problems, such as malnutrition, unintentional weight loss, depression, loss of appetite, and impaired immune system.

There are several conditions that can trigger ageusia, including:

  • Influenza
  • Sine infection
  • Injury to the tongue
  • Infections, including COVID-19
  • Sore throat
  • Obesity
  • Diabetes
  • Alzheimer's Disease
  • multiple sclerosis

Not only certain diseases, ageusia can also be caused by the consumption of drugs, such as antibiotics, chemotherapy drugs, antihistamines, cardiovascular drugs, antifungals, and antivirals.

Just like dysgeusia, the treatment of ageusia also depends on the cause. So, make sure you consult a doctor first if you experience ageusia, to get the right treatment. Because in some conditions, ageusia can also heal by itself.

To prevent dysgeusia and ageusia, you can take the following steps:

  • Avoid using tobacco products, such as smoking
  • Brush teeth regularly every day
  • Consuming enough water
  • Prevent infection by living a he althy lifestyle and maintaining body hygiene
  • Visit the dentist regularly for a dental check-up

Well, after recognizing the difference between dysgeusia and ageusia, you can be aware of the various accompanying symptoms and diseases that may arise as a result of this condition.

So, if you complain of impaired taste buds, such as a metallic or unpleasant taste in the mouth, and even loss of the ability to taste food or drink, you should consult a doctor to get the right treatment.

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