What causes Dry Mouth? (Xerostomia)

What causes Dry Mouth? (Xerostomia)

We all need saliva to moisten and cleanse our mouths, keep bacteria under control and to help us digest our food properly.  If we don’t produce enough saliva, we experience a dry mouth, which can be uncomfortable.  It is normal to experience a dry mouth occasionally, but if it becomes a frequent chronic problem then something may be an underlying cause.   There are several causes for dry mouth, also know in medical terms as Xerostomia.  Causes range from:

  • A side effect from prescription and non-prescription drugs used to treat everything from depression and anxiety, colds and allergies, acne, diarrhea and asthma.
  • A side effect of certain diseases, such as Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s, Diabetes, Sjogren’s syndrome and Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • A side effect of muscle relaxants and sedatives
  • A side effect for medical treatments that may have damaged the salivary glands, such as radiation and chemotherapy treatments.
  • Dehydration from excessive sweating, fever, blood loss or burns

Besides being uncomfortable, dry mouth can lead to more serious problems, such as increasing a person’s risk of gingivitis and gum disease

Treatments include:

  • Drink more water to keep you mouth moist
  • Suck on sugar free candy to help increase saliva
  • Protect your teeth by visiting your dentist regularly
  • Add moisture to your bedroom with a room vaporizer
  • use an artificial saliva substitute
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