First and foremost, if you haven’t done so, please reach out to your doctor to discuss this issue and your options.
New research from the British Medical Association shows 5% of people who had COVID-19 have long lasting loss of smell and taste. That’s about 27 million around the world.
Women were less likely to regain their sense of smell and taste than men, those with greater nasal congestion were less likely to recover.
Keep in mind, this analysis was a study of adults who were self-reporting. After about 30 days, 74% of patients reported improvement and after 90 days that number was up to 90%. After six months, 96% said they were able to smell again.
Science is still trying to grasp how COVID-19 affects your nose. We know coronavirus often causes swelling in the olfactory cleft or the passages in the upper part of the nasal cavity.
Perhaps the virus is attacking neurons that help you smell or some hypothesize the virus latches on to support cells, which help the neurons provide a signaling pathway.
Research out earlier this year found a genetic connection for those who lost their sense of smell.
Another study found that those who lost smell and taste were less likely to have severe disease and be hospitalized.
What do you do about it?
Treatments may include retraining the nose by sniffing essential oils, like lemon, clove and eucalyptus to stimulate different neurons.
Prescribed steroid rinses to alleviate inflammation and some studies are showing
Omega 3 fatty acids could be helpful.
Monica Robins is the Senior Health Correspondent at 3News. The information provided in this column is for educational and informational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment and before undertaking a new health care regimen. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read in this column or on our website.