No one thinks that dry mouth is a problem until they start noticing a lack of saliva. The medical name of this condition is xerostomia. It is a common symptom and normally a side effect of taking certain types of medication. But it can be a consequence of dental conditions so don’t put off treatment, because saliva cleans your mouth of food and bacteria and acts as a part of the digestive process.
Bright Side found what dry mouth can signal and ways of keeping it hydrated.
Causes and signals of dry mouth
- First of all, xerostomia can happen because of stress and dehydration. Your salivary glands may stop producing enough saliva in these cases.
- According to statistics, there are 400 prescription drugs that can cause xerostomia. Check the side effects for your medication. For example, pain-killers and antidepressants often have this side effect.
- Xerostomia can signal that there is a problem, like cavities. When you don't have enough saliva, you can't neutralize acids in your mouth and clean the food and bacteria from it.
- Dry mouth can be the signal of a fungal infection and candidiasis. You may have bad breath and difficulties with swallowing as well.
You may have damage to the nerve that tells the salivary glands to make saliva.
If you've faced this problem, there are some remedies you can use to take care of your mouth:
1. Drink plenty of water
Dehydration is a common cause of dry mouth. Doctors recommend drinking 8, 8-ounce glasses of water per day. This is approximately 2 liters of water.
2. Avoid caffeinated beverages
Did you notice, that after drinking coffee, you can be more thirsty during the day? Avoid caffeinated beverages, because caffeine is a diuretic that causes fluid loss. Coffee and tea can make the problem with dry mouth worse.
3. Eat sour food and lemons
Sour food stimulates the salivary glands. Squeezing half a lemon in a glass of water is the perfect solution, for example. But be careful with this, because acid from the lemon can harm your teeth enamel.
4. Avoid using tobacco products
Tobacco can reduce saliva production, especially if you take medicine at the same time. Also, the tar from cigarettes can irritate your salivary glands.
5. Suck on a piece of sugar-free candy
Suck on a sugar-free candy. It will give you some short-term relief. It is always better than a normal candy which can cause cavities.
6. Protect dry lips
Use a hydrating balm or lipstick for your lips. Dry lips almost always cause more discomfort if you have xerostomia.
7. Maintain good oral hygiene
Take care of your oral hygiene. Brush your teeth at least twice a day, use an oral rinse, chew sugar-free chewing gum, and visit your dentist regularly.
Have you ever had dry mouth? How did you treat it? Leave a comment below if our article was interesting to you.