Dry Mouth – What can I do? Understanding the mouth
Chronic dry mouth (Xerostomia) is caused by lack of saliva for a long period of time.
Can’t whistle because your mouth feels so dry? Feel like someone put a cotton ball in your mouth? Does your tongue stick to your teeth or the roof of your mouth?
Chronic dry mouth (Xerostomia) is caused by lack of saliva for a long period of time. Multiple causes for this condition include: medications, chronic diseases such as Sjogren’s Syndrome and certain medical treatments.
Typical examples of medical treatments include bone marrow transplants, radiation treatment for head or neck cancer and removal of salivary glands which can lead to a progressive onset of this condition.
Chronic dry mouth is not only uncomfortable, but it also increases your risk for dental decay and makes it difficult for dentures to fit properly.
You don’t have to suffer. Understand what the causes are and what solutions are available as your first steps to relief from chronic dry mouth.
Dry mouth can cause increased dental decay especially at the gum line.
The decayed teeth may require restoration and in advanced decay situations, root canal treatment and a crown and if it is not restorable an extraction may be necessary.
Having a dry mouth can cause increase the risk of dental decay especially at the gum line.
What can a Prosthodontist do?
Prosthodontists are committed to helping you overcome the lifetime of risks that chronic dry mouth presents and ensure your natural teeth, crowns, bridges, dentures and implants look and function well.
Your prosthodontist can:
• Work with your doctor to manage your chronic dry mouth.
• Provide greater comfort with prescription salivary substitutes gels, sprays, mints and gums.
• Prescribe special toothpastes and mouthwashes to reduce risk of tooth decay.
• Recommend and provide dental implants to stabilise dentures decreasing irritation caused by chronic dry mouth.
Our Clinicians are trained in implant, esthetic and reconstructive dentistry. They also can assist in chronic dry mouth relief and related dentistry needs. Our dental hygiene service can help maintain treatment outcomes
Relieve your symptoms Saliva is key to a healthy mouth. Without enough saliva you can develop tooth decay and other more serious conditions. Simple steps can be taken to diagnose the problem and relieve symptoms.
Why care about dry mouth?
Lack of saliva, which contains protective minerals and proteins, can result in tooth decay, especially near the gum line and crown margins, and infect your gums.
What causes dry mouth?
Prescriptions that help depression, asthma, bladder control, blood pressure, Parkinson’s disease as well as some over-the-counter medicines to alleviate allergies, colds and coughs.
Chronic diseases such as diabetes, depression, ectodermal dysplasia, hepatitis C, sarcoidosis and Sjogren’s Syndrome.
What steps can you take to alleviate your discomfort?
Drink additional fluids that do not contain sugar. Water is the best.
Use sugar-free, hard candy or gum to stimulate saliva flow.
Visit your prosthodontist or dentist more frequently than every six months to address your increased risk of tooth decay.
Consume foodstuffs, drinks with a low pH.
Acid sources from inside the mouth.
Gastric Fluid. This can be caused by a condition known as GORD(GERD) Gastroesophegeal Reflux Disease. This is a disease where gastric fluid from the stomach comes in contact with the teeth causing erosion and commonly occurs during sleep. People who suffer from Bulimia and Anorexia Nervosa can experience very significant tooth erosion similar to GORD(GERD) patients.
Habits and behaviors that cause erosion.
Excessive tooth brushing with abrasive toothpastes and habits such as swishing of acidic low pH drinks or biting lemons can increase the acidic content of oral fluids. Teeth subject to acid erosion can also significantly contribute to the toothwear caused by tooth grinding or Sleep Bruxism due to removal of the harder outer enamel surface.