Dry mouth due to the lack of saliva is a condition known as Xerostomia. Saliva is an important part of the body, as it acts on the food particles in the mouth, reducing acids and thereby also reducing tooth decay. Here’s what you need to know about it:
Effects of Dry Mouth
Little or no saliva causes the mouth and lips to dry, be tight, and form cracks. You may end up with a rough and dry tongue, which makes it difficult to swallow or talk. You may also experience sores at the corners of your mouth. Because of this, Mahoney Family Dentistry and other dental professionals say that food particles will remain in the mouth and later result in bad breath. You may as well end up with lipstick on your teeth, and a hoarse throat.
Causes of Dry Mouth
- Conventional drugs for colds and allergies, prescription medication for high blood pressure, mental health problems, and overactive bladder.
- Chemotherapy and radiation may lead to dry mouth. According to Mayo Clinic, they also damage salivary glands.
- A medical condition — Sjogren’s syndrome — also causes dry mouth. It is an autoimmune illness where the white blood cells harm the body’s tear and salivary glands.
- HIV-infected people or diabetics may as well suffer from mouth dryness.
- Using tobacco products, including smokeless ones, aggravates dryness in the mouth.
Treatment for Dry Mouth
Lack of saliva is harmful to your oral health, so it’s best to find the ideal treatment for you. You should, therefore, observe proper oral hygiene by brushing and flossing daily and following routine visits to your dentist. Avoid brushing immediately after a meal; rinse with an antiseptic mouthwash (alcohol-free) instead. Other solutions you can do are:
- Chewing sugar-free gum or sucking on sugar-free candy to boost saliva production.
- Talk to your doctor about over-the-counter medication.
- Take plenty of water and milk throughout the day and during meals to help in swallowing.
- Avoid sugary drinks and coffee.
Apart from finding a solution to your dry mouth, timely treatment can help you stay away from other dental complications such as gum disease and tooth decay. Wherever you are in the U.S., dentists are available and you can consult them for reliable services.