Having a mouth that is dry is uncomfortable and may be a sign that you have a medical condition. At Lakeway Cosmetic Dentistry, we will determine why your mouth is dry and recommend the appropriate course of treatment.
Are You Suffering From Dry Mouth?
No matter the underlying cause, xerostomia (dry mouth) is a sign that you may not be producing enough saliva.
Other symptoms include:
- Halitosis (bad breath)
- Trouble chewing or swallowing your food
- Little to no taste
- Problems speaking clearly
- Mouth sores and other oral hygiene problems
- Sore throat or raspy voice
- Thick saliva
- Feeling as though you have something caught in your throat
Why Your Mouth is Dry
Dehydration is the most common reason that people experience episodes of a dry mouth, and this can be easily remedied by drinking more water and cutting back on sugary drinks and beverages with caffeine. The second most common reason is medications. You can speak with your physician about changing the medications and other steps to reduce the dryness in your mouth. Tobacco and alcohol use also increase your chances of suffering from dry mouth.
If you do not have these underlying causes, the problem may be more serious and require a professional dentist, such as blockages in the salivary glands or bacteria in your mouth.
Dry Mouth From Dental Devices
Improperly fitting dental devices like dentures, braces or clear aligners can be another cause of dry mouth. To avoid this, be sure that your dental device is properly fitted and not causing any kind of discomfort.
Do I Need Treatment for Dry Mouth?
Living with xerostomia has implications, especially as you get older. Dry Mouth may lead to:
- Sores inside the mouth or along the lips
- Thrush, a type of yeast infection
- Gum disease, plaque and tooth decay
If your xerostomia is making it hard to chew and swallow your food, you may also develop nutritional deficiencies and gastrointestinal problems.
Xerostomia and Seniors
Older patients are more susceptible to developing dryness in the mouth because they produce less saliva as they age, and left untreated, it can lead to tooth loss and needing dentures. Seniors may also have more difficulty in brushing and flossing, so bacteria have an ideal environment in which to thrive, without saliva to neutralize acid and eliminate bacteria.
Treating a Dry, Sticky Mouth
We offer treatments to help keep your mouth moist and free of harmful bacteria. Special mouthwashes can add lubrication that protects your teeth and gums. For more advanced cases, we may recommend medications that stimulate saliva production, as well as products that will protect your teeth, such as fluoride treatments. Making some lifestyle changes always helps your oral health, such as quitting smoking and reducing alcohol consumption. Carry water with you wherever you go, and swish it around your mouth a little, every time you take a drink.
Is Your Mouth Dry? Contact Lakeway Cosmetic Dentistry
If you notice that your mouth is dry more often than not, we invite you to schedule an appointment at Lakeway Cosmetic Dentistry. We will determine why your mouth is dry and recommend treatments that keep your mouth moist and protect your teeth and gums.