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Sense of smell

Hi, I was wondering if anybody else has had or is having a similar problem with their smell. When I had my head injury I completely lost my sense of smell and was told it is highly unlikely I would get it back. 18 months later and there has been no sign. But today I fell like there is a smell "stuck" in my nose which is making me feel sick. It is confusing me and I don't know if my mind is playing tricks or there is possible healing happening. If anybody could help with any comment that would be amazing.



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The medical term for your loss of smell is Anosmia Chloe and it's an extremely common condition after brain injury. All four of us in a 4 bed ward had olfactory issues after brain haemorrhages, and mine (Troposmia - distortion of smell & taste) has persisted for almost 6 years.

It seriously impacted on my quality of life at first, but I've gradually adapted to the issue and, at times, I've experienced slight alterations. In the beginning I had a permanent smell like burning plastic and my favourite light, fresh perfume smelled vile. But one day I found I could smell certain flowers and that the burning smell had gone.

Now, I have an almost permanent pleasant scented smell. And, whereas my taste was so badly corrupted initially, I can now enjoy most foods ; but not all.

It seems hit and miss, and even the neurologists can't predict the long term outcome. I know that some people's taste/smell does return to normal in time and other's don't, so I'm afraid it's a wait & see situation, as with many after effects of brain injury.

I hope you'll find the issue gets more manageable with time. Our brains have an amazing ability to adapt to change, but I find that concentrating really hard on memorising smells &/or tastes can work towards fooling our senses, in a good way.

Cat x

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I had a car accident about 9 months ago. I noticed that my sense of taste had gone about 2 months ago. I either cant taste something or it is weak. like I cant taste chocolate or sweet or sour. nothing tastes horrible fortunately just weak or not there. I had also forgotten what thinks tasted like so initially I had no basses for comparison so didn't notice it until 6 months later. I noticed it about a month ago when i tried an aniseed lolly. i could remember what aniseed tasted like, but i couldn't taste it in these. then i tried cokacola and i tried ginger-beer. i couldn't taste any of these. i have since then been trying different strong flavored things. some flavors have gotten stronger but still most are weak.but at least it is something. stimulation might help bring it back. Just from my own resent experience, try remembering what you are tasting and smelling used to be like as you try it now. it might help stimulate it. Just a thought.


I totaly understand you i had my tbi 8years ago in september i have lost my sense of smell only the odd time if something is really strong i can smell it.i wonder if have tinnuts too since yor tbi??i have it ,constant ringing in my ears that is worse than no smell at all


I don't have ringing in my ears. But I do suffer with blocked sinuses sinuses since. It's a bit of a pain really.


Hi Chloe,I lost my sense of smell and taste. Taste came back but I had to wrk on smell. I got an odd sensation like you, which you describe as stuck in your nose. It was the start of healing for me and I worked on it by retraining my brain having read a great book called Mind Sculpture. Basically, it recommended picking up something strong smelling like a lemon, and sniffing it whilst remembering the smell. Ultimately I now smell lemons but am not sure if it is a memory or an actual smell but it works. I think it does help and the nasty smell is a good sign. Helen


The weird thing is I can't remember most smells so I don't know how I would retrain. It sounds promising though thank you


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