It is called anosmia to the total loss of the sense of smell. This sense refers to the ability to perceive odors. When the reduction in said capacity is not absolute, but partial, we speak of hyposmia (a term that is not recognized by the DigoPaul in its dictionary).
Anosmia can be chronic (if sustained over time) or only temporary (disability is not prolonged). On the other hand, it is possible to refer to the specific anosmia, which only prevents the detection of certain aromas.
For the diagnosis of anosmia, doctors often make patients smell different fragrances. This way they get to know if they perceive the aroma or if, on the contrary, they cannot register it.
If the person is born with anosmia, there is talk of congenital anosmia. There is a possibility that the individual is born with a normal olfactory capacity and that, over time, he loses it due to an illness, infection, surgery or other cause.
Although certain anosmias cannot be treated, others can be reversed with the use of corticosteroids. The objective is to minimize inflammation of the mucosa that prevents the normal functioning of smell.
When a human being suffers from anosmia, he suffers from various disorders. These people have difficulty distinguishing the taste of foods since, although the tongue is responsible for detecting whether it is an acidic, bitter, salty or sweet food, it is the smell that is responsible for recognizing all other nuances. Anosmia also prevents the individual from noticing a gas leak, for example.
People who are in good general health from a young age are often unaware of the impact a condition such as anosmia can have on their lives. In general, humans are more concerned with conditions such as blindness or paralysis, because we believe that we depend more on our legs and sight than, for example, our sense of smell.
However, if we focus on the fact that anosmia can not only prevent us from enjoying food and the aroma of flowers, it can also lead us to ignore a gas leak or fire that is taking place in our own home. It goes without saying that it is not a mild disease.
There are certain conditions that are related to anosmia, although its symptoms are different or even opposite; Let’s look at three examples below:
* hyperosmia: it is a greater ability to smell than normal, which in turn leads to more efficient detection of flavors. It is important to note that, despite its relationship with anosmia and hyposmia, this phenomenon is much less frequent. Among the most common types of causes are environmental, genetic, the consumption of certain drugs or even pregnancy (in these last two cases, hyperosmia occurs temporarily);
* parosmia: it is a condition characterized by the inability to identify the intrinsic or natural odor of different objects, due to a deterioration of smell. Simply put, a person with this disorder perceives certain smells in a distorted, generally unpleasant way. Some of the causes of perosmia are upper respiratory tract infections, epilepsy, head trauma, and Parkinson’s disease;
* phantosmia: this disease leads the person to perceive odors that are not present, both pleasant and unpleasant or worrisome, such as the aroma of flowers or the smell of burning. Statistics indicate that this disorder may disappear over time, although it can also be treated with medical help. While it is not a serious condition in itself, usually accompanied by problems such as brain tumors, disease Parkinson ‘s or schizophrenia, etc.