Metallic taste

A metallic taste is not usually serious and can be a symptom of many different things. Treatment will depend on the cause.

Common causes of metallic taste

Cause What you can do
Gum disease regularly brush your teeth, use dental floss, have a dental check-up every 6 months
Taking medicine, like metronidazole speak to a pharmacist for advice – do not stop taking prescribed medicine without medical advice
Cancer treatment, like chemotherapy or radiation therapy eat stronger tasting food like ginger, spices and boiled sweets
Colds, sinus infections and other airway problems the taste should go away once the problem has cleared up
Indigestion the taste should go away after treating indigestion
Being pregnant the taste is usually temporary and clears up by itself

Sometimes, a metallic taste can be linked to a problem with your sense of smell.

Non-urgent advice: See a GP if:

  • the metallic taste does not go away
  • the metallic taste has no obvious cause

Page last reviewed: 9 September 2020
Next review due: 9 September 2023