The Challenges of “Dry Mouth”

The Challenges of “Dry Mouth”

September 15, 2015  | IN DENTAL HEALTH

It’s chronic bad breath… it’s feeling parched… it’s a sticky, dry, and uncomfortable feeling in your mouth.

It’s more than thirst. It’s Dry Mouth, technically called Xerostomia, and if you suffer from it, you are not alone. Dry Mouth Syndrome is a common condition.

But just because it’s common, doesn’t mean it isn’t aggravating!

The production of saliva is critical to your oral health! It contains essential enzymes that help you chew, digest, and taste your food. Saliva also keeps bacteria that naturally form in your mouth in check.

  • A dry mouth may make your voice rough and harsh, and you may feel a constant tickle in your throat. You may have a sore throat. You may also experience difficulty wearing your dentures, have a metallic or bitter taste in your mouth, have chronic bad breath and experience difficulty speaking or eating.
  • When you suffer from dry mouth, the skin around your mouth and lips may be dry and tight. Your lips may crack, and your tongue may feel rough and dry; the corners of your mouth may crack and sometimes bleed.
  • Your symptoms may worsen at night because saliva flow normally decreases with sleep.
  • You can experience problems with your teeth if you suffer from dry mouth. Without the action of saliva, tooth decay can be much more progressive.
  • Sometimes, dry mouth exists side by side with mucositis and stomatitis, which involve inflammation of the soft tissues in the mouth.

Contributing factors to dry mouth:

  • Anxiety
  • Smoking or using smokeless tobacco
  • Advancing age
  • Mouth breathing
  • Side effects of some diseases and infections like HIV/AIDS, Sjogren’s syndrome, Alzheimer’s, and diabetes
  • Side effects of certain medications such as antihistamines, diuretics, and some antidepressants

What to do?

– Get regular dental check-ups

– Stop smoking

– Brush and floss daily

– Use an alcohol-free mouthwash

– Sip water throughout the day

– Sucking on sugar-free candy or gum

If you are experiencing dry mouth symptoms and want to discuss your concerns, call StarWhite Dental for a consultation today at 951.698.4426.

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