Winter is not even close to over and the entire nation has had a big dose of icy temperatures, slippery roads, and overworked heaters. Heaters and furnaces do a good job of keeping us warm (when they work and you are not having rolling blackouts) but they also turn the air we breathe dry as the Sahara on a hot day.
Dry air and dry tongues are anathema to Burning Mouth Syndrome (BMS) sufferers and can increase our burning sensation and even bring on flares that take time to subside.
What can we do?
Humidity is our friend along with hydration. Feeling pain? Drink something soothing. Lips getting cracked and dry? Vaseline or something like it is very efficient at holding moisture in your tissues, but seriously, this is a sign you need to add some moisture to your air.
Humidifiers are a possibility, but you can also boil water on your stove, leave your bathroom door open and the fan off when you shower and open the dishwasher when it is done to let your dishes air dry. All of these will add ambient humidity and may make your BMS a bit more bearable.
Nighttime can be the worst, particularly if you breathe through your mouth when you sleep, and a humidifier in the bedroom is a possible solution, but be sure to maintain it and keep it clean.
Wet washcloths left to dry naturally can also help put some moisture in the air. You can even leave bowls of water out to evaporate. Some DIY hints can be found in this article. It also points out safety hints that are very useful.
Keep drinking, my friends, and make sure you are as hydrated as you need to be to keep pain levels manageable and replace those fluids you are losing to dryness.
Remember, Spring is right around the corner! Right? It is, isn’t it???