A sudden onset of stress, or an illness can result in a case of dry mouth. While it is not uncommon for someone to experience occasional bouts of dry mouth, if it is a persistent problem, you should talk to your dentist, since dry mouth can cause problems for your teeth and gums.
Dry mouth occurs when your body does not produce enough saliva. It can be caused by stress, or by medications for pain, high blood pressure, congestion and depression. It may be the result of certain diseases or medical conditions such as HIV or Parkinson’s. It may occur during menopause, or during the course of chemotherapy or radiation therapy. Alcoholic and caffeinated drinks and smoking can also contribute to dry mouth.
Symptoms include a dry or sticky mouth, problems chewing, swallowing or speaking, a sore throat, cracked lips and chronic bad breath. If you do not address dry mouth you may be at an increased risk of gum disease and tooth loss. Your dentist may suggest that you increase your water intake, or decrease or avoid caffeine, alcohol or tobacco. You may also want to chew sugarless gum or suck on sugarless hard candy.
Your dentist may prescribe a medicated mouthwash, or artificial saliva to address the problem. There are also medications that stimulate the salivary glands. Your dentist may want to consult with your primary care physician.
If you are experiencing the symptoms of dry mouth, or have other dental concerns, our dentist, Dr. Steven Sachs will be happy to meet with you. If you live in the Orem, Utah, area and would like to schedule an appointment at Sachs Family Dental, call 801-225-4701 today. We look forward to helping you have a healthy smile!