Why head injury causes loss of smell? Smell loss following traumatic brain injury is often overlooked as doctors tend not bother to ask about or test for loss or change in smell — or taste for that matter. Many times, people with brain injury first report changes in taste when they lose or notice a change in their ability to smell. Typically, complete loss of smell — or what is called anosmia — will be quite noticeable to a person following a traumatic brain injury and may affect numerous aspects of their life. Unfortunately, there is no good treatment cure for post-traumatic anosmia. Typically, if a person doesn’t regain his ability to smell six months after the injury, the loss will likely be permanent.
Loss of taste and smell has been reported to be as high as 25 percent after traumatic brain injury. The loss of taste is generally due to loss of smell. Loss of smell has many possible causes including injury to the nose, nasal passages, sinuses, olfactory nerve, and the brain. The olfactory nerve brings the sensation of smell from your nose to the brain. Since this nerve passes from the nose to the brain, it is at high risk of injury when there is trauma to the head.
What is Anosmia?
Anosmia is a condition in which a person cannot smell or smell anything. This situation can be temporary or permanent where the cause can be due to acquired or inborn. Impaired sense of smell can affect one’s quality of life, especially when tasting food, because the sensation of taste in food is a combination of the senses of smell and taste. Therefore, people with anosmia will experience an appetite disorder that can result in malnutrition. In addition, anosmia can also cause the sufferer to be unaware of the danger signs around him, such as not being able to know the smell of stale food, the smell of gas leaks, or the smell of fire smoke.
The main complaint of anosmia is not being able to smell the odors around her, including her own body odor. Usually, the person will notice changes in the person on things that he previously considered to have a pungent odor, but then not smell anything.
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