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Mouth Diseases

Pain in the roof of the mouth- please help

10/25/2006

Question:

Around Aug. 19-2006 or shortly before, I started having pain in my gums that went to the teeth, and then I had upper roof mouth pain: burning, pulsating, aching and some went to the top teeth. The upper roof of the mouth felt, raw and still does. The pain did subside.

The dentist looked at my mouth, saw nothing. He took x-rays and said all was fine with the teeth and gums but now the pain is back again, this time worse: aching, burning, pulsating, stinging on the roof of my mouth mainly, along with ‘itching episodes’ when what I call the ‘mouth attack’ is over. It comes and goes, but the raw sensation stays, and like I said, the dentist said it all looks fine on the roof of my mouth and teeth.

Please can you help me? I hurt so badly and it makes tears come to my eyes. I am not sure what it could be, the dentist, is lost, he doesn’t know what it is and at times it will go to some of the bottom gums :(.

I am really scared at this point to know that I am in so much pain and I don’t know where to go next if the dentist can’t even see anything! No white patches in my mouth, no sores, and the tongue will get a burning sensation too, but not bad, or often when this happens.

I do have severe allergies. It just started back up a few days ago, again all of the pain, (but as I said around the 18th of Aug. when it first started, the pain let up) but not the raw feeling right before the roof of the mouth. It’s almost like having attacks; it comes and then stops, and starts up again. Please can anyone help me... and tell me if it sounds like I have some kind of mouth cancer? I would greatly appreciate some help.

Answer:

The symptoms you describe could represent a condition known as burning mouth syndrome.  While an annoyance for many adults, it is not life-threatening.  A separate information sheet will be provided with this answer.

On the other hand, few patients describe the pain associated with burning mouth syndrome as being so intense that it brings tears.

Just to be sure that there is no evidence of a hidden tumor or cancer, you should consider having an examination of the upper jaw by a dental specialist such as an oral and maxillofacial surgeon or pathologist.  This should include x-rays of the jaws, such as a panoramic radiograph.

Good luck!

Related Resources:

Burning Mouth
Burning Mouth Syndrome

For more information:

Go to the Mouth Diseases health topic, where you can:

Response by:

John R Kalmar, DMD, PhD John R Kalmar, DMD, PhD
Clinical Professor of Pathology
Associate Dean of Dentistry Administration
College of Dentistry
The Ohio State University