Most dental patients have experienced dry mouth and its symptoms at some point in time. In most instances, the symptoms of dry mouth are just a minor inconvenience and short lived due to temporary illness, medications or other conditions. However, for others dry mouth is a constant struggle that interrupts the activities of daily life.
Dry mouth, also known as xerostomia, is a medical condition that affects millions of people every year. Of course, the main symptom of dry mouth is a lack of adequate saliva in the mouth. Your salivary glands are located inside your cheeks and under the tongue. It may seem excessive, but a normal mouth produces as much as a half gallon of saliva day.
The most common cause of dry mouth is illness and medications that are taken as a result of illness. Autoimmune diseases are the most likely to cause dry mouth. Additionally, diabetes, Parkinson’s disease and cystic fibrosis are also culprits for dry mouth.
In order to prevent dry mouth in the future, patients are encouraged to talk to their doctor and pharmacist about potential drug substitutions that may help prevent the onset of dry mouth during and immediately after illness. There are also many over the counter products, such as Biotene, that are designed to stimulate saliva production during the day.
If left untreated, dry mouth can lead to bad breath and also make you more susceptible to tooth decay. Contact our office today to learn more about the prevention and treatment of dry mouth.