Meth mouth

Dr James Sheldon et al.

Meth mouth is the name given to the overt dental disease that is one of the signs of methamphetamine use.

Clinical examination often reveals blackened, stained, rotting or crumbling teeth. Serial studies only a few years apart may show a striking deterioration in the patient's oral health. These features are usually obvious on OPG and associated dental abscess formation should be also excluded 1-2.

Methamphetamine is a psychostimulant that is rising in popularity 1. It can be smoked or injected intravenously.

The direct causative link between methamphetamine and dental disease has not been established. It is thought that drug-induced xerostomia, dehydration and teeth grinding are just some of the factors contributing to the dental disease 1-2.

Whilst the clinical history is usually suggestive of drug-induced dental disease, less severe dental deterioration, erosions and caries could also be demonstrated in other states causing increased intra-oral acidity, particularly bulimia and severe reflux.

Share article

Article Information

rID: 25038
System: Head & Neck
Sections: Pathology, Signs
Tag: cases
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Methamphetamine mouth
  • Methamphetamine related dental disease

Support Radiopaedia and see fewer ads

Cases and Figures

  • Drag
    Case 1
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Updating… Please wait.
    Loadinganimation

    Alert accept

    Error Unable to process the form. Check for errors and try again.

    Alert accept Thank you for updating your details.