Combating Dry Mouth
Dry mouth is not only uncomfortable and frustrating, but can also be detrimental to your oral health. It can be caused by a number of factors including diabetes, autoimmune disorders, mouth-breathing, or as the side effect of certain medications. While dry mouth isn’t something that should immediately send you into a panic about your oral health, it is something that you should try to avoid if possible.
Dry Mouth Damage
If left untreated for long enough, a lack of saliva can increase the likelihood of dental cavities, tooth decay, and gum disease. This is because saliva is an important part of keeping the pH levels in the mouth balanced as well as helping to wash away food debris and plaque. Without enough saliva, this plaque will be allowed to accumulate on the teeth increasing the odds of tooth decay, gum disease, and dental cavities.
Combating Dry Mouth
Below are a few things you can do to help increase saliva production and keep dry mouth at bay:
- Cut out caffeine – Caffeinated beverages can contribute to dry mouth, so cutting these drinks out of your diet should help ease your dry mouth symptoms.
- Chew gum – Chewing sugar-free gum can stimulate saliva production in the mouth. This is because of the chewing motion of the jaw and teeth.
- Sugar-free candies – Similar to sugar-free gum, sucking on sugar-free candies can also create more moisture and saliva in the mouth, helping to wash away bacteria and plaque.
- Increase water consumption – This one may seem obvious, but drinking more water can help combat dry mouth. This is because dry mouth can sometimes be a symptom of dehydration, so make sure you’re taking in plenty of fluids.
- Quit tobacco products – Any type of tobacco product will cause dry mouth. Not only will quitting them help increase saliva production, but it will also dramatically decrease the likelihood that you’ll develop oral and other cancers.
If you’re concerned that dry mouth may be contributing to gum disease or if you have any other concerns about your periodontal health, please contact Coastal Periodontics today. Our office is located here in Portsmouth, New Hampshire.