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Caring for Life

5 common questions about dry mouth

Dry mouth is a typical symptom of Sjögren’s syndrome, as perfectly as other ailments like diabetes and HIV/AIDS. With out enough saliva, or spit, it can be challenging to crack down foodstuff, swallow, and choose treatment of your teeth.

The Nationwide Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Analysis solutions 5 typical questions about dry mouth and Sjögren’s syndrome to enable you navigate this difficult affliction.

Is dry mouth a standard portion of getting old?

No, dry mouth is not portion of the getting old approach by itself. However, as folks age, lots of could establish disorders that influence producing saliva and they could choose medicines that can dry out the mouth.

What can lead to dry mouth?

  • Drugs. Dry mouth is a side outcome of lots of sorts of medicines, which include people for despair, allergies and colds, and large blood tension.
  • Dehydration. Dehydration occurs when you get rid of far more fluids than you choose in. Men and women of all ages can come to be dehydrated, but older grownups are primarily inclined to it.  
  • Radiation therapy. Salivary glands can be broken if they are uncovered to radiation during most cancers treatment.
  • Chemotherapy. Drugs used to deal with most cancers can make saliva thicker, triggering the mouth to come to feel dry.
  • Injury to the head or neck. A head or neck harm can problems the nerves that tell salivary glands to make saliva.

What can I do about dry mouth?

Go to your dentist or medical doctor, who will try to decide the lead to and could:

  • Recommend switching, or modifying the dosage of, a treatment. But do not make any alterations to your medicines in advance of talking with your dentist or medical doctor.
  • Prescribe medicines to enhance saliva.
  • Advise utilizing artificial saliva.

Does dry mouth set me at threat for tooth decay?

Indeed. Mainly because saliva protects towards tooth decay, acquiring considerably less saliva can set you at threat. Continue to keep your teeth balanced by:

  • Brushing at the very least twice a working day with a fluoride toothpaste.
  • Flossing regularly.
  • Going to your dentist at the very least twice a yr. You can check with your dentist if you need to have a prescription-strength fluoride gel or rinse to enable avoid cavities.

If I have Sjögren’s, what can my dentist endorse?

To shield your teeth, your dentist could endorse:

  • Using fluoride pastes, mouth rinses, gels, foams, or varnishes
  • Ingesting satisfactory amounts of drinking water (8 to twelve 8-ounce glasses each and every working day)
  • Stimulating saliva generation utilizing sugarless lozenges, chewing gums, candies made up of xylitol, or medicines these types of as pilocarpine and cevimeline
  • Making use of chlorhexidine, which can destroy germs
  • Using a calcium phosphate rinse to maintenance tooth enamel