Has your breath been smelling like metal lately?

Perhaps you even TASTE metal for no reason and wonder if a low thyroid could be the cause.

Hypothyroidism, or underactive thyroid, can cause numerous symptoms.

Can Underactive Thyroid Cause Breath to Smell Like Metal and a Phantom Taste of Metal?

“Yes, low thyroid does seem to cause a metallic taste for some individuals,” says Marcelle Pick, MSN, OB/GYN, NP, in private practice and cofounder of Women to Women Health Center, and author of the book, “Is It Me or My Hormones?

Pick continues, “If it happens enough that it warrants thyroid testing when someone complains of having a metallic taste or having metallic breath.”

If you’ve been tasting metal for no apparent reason, this doesn’t mean you also have metallic breath.

So don’t assume this unless someone gives you objective feedback, such as, “Gee, I smell metal on your breath,” or someone nicknames you Iron Breath.

A study that’s reported in The American Journal of Medicine (McConnell et al) found that taste and smell functions are altered by untreated hypothyroidism.

Before treatment, nine of the 18 study subjects were aware of an alteration in their sense of taste, and seven reported an alteration in their sense of smell.

But none reported anything of a metallic nature, and none reported odd smelling breath.

Nevertheless, if you know for a fact that your breath does have a metallic feature to it, your doctor should run a thyroid test as well as other tests.

You should also see a dentist, as gum disease can cause foul breath that may smell like metal.

Other Symptoms of Underactive Thyroid

• Dry skin

• Fatigue

• Constipation

• Unexplained depression

• Hair loss or thinning hair

• Unexplained weight gain

• Increased sensitivity to cold

• Hoarse voice

• Weakness

• Muscle aches

• Slowed heart rate

• Memory problems

marcelle pickMarcelle Pick holds a BS in nursing from the University of New Hampshire School of Nursing and her MS in nursing from Boston College-Harvard Medical School. She is certified as an OBGYN nurse practitioner.
Lorra Garrick has been covering medical, fitness and cybersecurity topics for many years, having written thousands of articles for print magazines and websites, including as a ghostwriter. She’s also a former ACE-certified personal trainer.  
Sources
mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/hypothyroidism/symptoms-causes/syc-20350284
sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0002934375903940 low thyroid, metal breath