What is dry mouth?
Dry mouth is a condition whereby the salivary glands either reduce or stop the production of saliva (hyposalivation). Saliva is made up of protective enzymes, proteins, mucus, antibacterial chemicals, electrolytes and water. Saliva is produced by the major salivary glands, which are located in the cheeks and underneath the tongue.
FACT: There are over 600 minor salivary glands located around the mouth too that provide lubrication for digestion.
Why is dry mouth harmful to your mouth?
- Promotes other diseases
- Periodontal disease
- Bad breath (halitosis)
- Mouth sores
- Sore throat
- Fungal infections
- Difficulty speech
- Difficulty chewing
- Altered taste
- Heart Disease
- Lung Disease
What causes dry mouth?
- Salivary glands reduce functioning
- Salivary stones (blocked ducts)
- Snoring / mouth breathing
What can be done to treat dry mouth?
1. Find the cause (s)
2. Seek alternative medications with physician (that caused dry mouth)
3. Use topical saliva substitutes
4. Use a medication called pilocarpine or evoxac to induce saliva production
5. Rinse with a non-alcoholic fluoride rinse
6. Rinse with water after every snack and drink (within the 7-minute window)
7. Brush your entire mouth after every meal
8. Limit caffeine intake
9. Chew gum containing xylitol sugar (prevents cavities and promotes saliva)
10. Stop all tobacco use
I hope you found this information about dry mouth useful on your quest to a better feeling and healthier mouth! Feel free to reach out to us here should you have any questions.