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Harvard Health Blog
A poor sense of smell might matter more than you thought
- By Robert H. Shmerling, MD, Senior Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing
As a service to our readers, Harvard Health Publishing provides access to our library of archived content. Please note the date of last review or update on all articles. No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.
Is there anything we can do to prevent or improve our sense of smell?
I instantly lost sense of smell (anosmia) and taste (ageusia) after my GP, against my will, injected me with antibiotics, as l am allergic to most (against pneumonia). I have minimally recovered in the last 3 years. I take some supplements, GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) is probably the most effective, but also ashwagandha & Curcumin C3 complex, both strong anti-inflammatories. A friend also suggested to “retrain” the brain by inhaling a few times a day (just few seconds) some essential oils, such as lemon, clove, etc. Sadly, even when l saw a neurologist, she knew less than l about olfactory loss as mine. There is a great study published by University of Pennsylvania on this subject (~ 150 pages) & l understand that they perform a full scale day-long test for the olfactory problems. Also, you might contact AnosmiaFoundation.com/disability and AnosmiaAwareness.org.
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