What Can Cause Loss of Smell?

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Having trouble smelling things around you is not normal and could be caused by several conditions.

The complete or partial loss of smell is called anosmia and it can be temporary or permanent, depending on what caused it.

Loss of smell is usually a symptom of another medical condition. Some of the probable causes for loss of smell are:

  • Nasal congestion brought on by a cold, allergy, influenza, non-allergic rhinitis, or sinus infection. This is the most common cause.
  • Something physically blocking the flow of air through your nose, such as a deformity of the nose or tumors.
  • Nasal polyps – noncancerous growths in the nose and sinuses that physically block the nasal passage.
  • Exposure to toxic chemicals, such as pesticides or solvents.
  • Certain medications, such as some antibiotics, antidepressants, or anti-inflammatory, have loss of smell side-effects.
  • Cocaine abuse.
  • Radiation treatment for head or neck cancers.
  • Injury to the nose or smell nerves.
  • Old age.
  • Certain medical conditions, such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis, diabetes, etc. can disturb the olfactory nerve pathway.

Loss of smell is usually temporary, especially if caused by nasal congestion. However, people over 60 are at a greater risk of permanently losing their sense of smell.

Depending on its cause, loss of smell can be treated in different ways. It is always best to talk to a doctor about your loss of smell to determine the cause and find the best course of treatment. If you are suffering from loss of smell, make an appointment with Dr. Pasha today!