Saliva plays an important role in our oral health but most of us fail to realize it. Until we don’t have enough saliva, we don’t understand its importance. If you have ever felt that your mouth is completely parched, then you may know how painful and annoying dry mouth can be.
Saliva is produced by the salivary glands in our body to lubricate the food we eat and cleanse out any particles and bacteria in the mouth. It also contains some digestive enzymes that help in breaking down the food. Saliva also plays an important part in helping us swallow and speak without difficulty and taste food.
What is dry mouth?
Dry mouth is a condition in which the salivary glands fail to produce enough saliva to meet your needs. When this happens, you will face more problems than just feeling thirsty. However, dry mouth is not a disease in itself. It is simply an indication of an underlying condition. Temporary dry mouth can be caused by stress, dehydration or even nervousness. Many medicines can also cause dry mouth as a side effect including pain killers, anti-depressants and more. Some conditions that can cause damage to the salivary glands are responsible for severe dry mouth. To know more about the causes of dry mouth, please read this article.
How can dry mouth harm you?
Saliva is an important part of oral health that helps in maintaining oral hygiene helps us speak and even aids digestion of food. As such, dry mouth can put you up against various dental problems. If you feel like your throat and mouth are dry frequently, you should schedule an appointment with a dentist near you in Charlotte NC. Here are some dental problems that you may face due to dry mouth:
- Cavities: When your mouth is dry, you are more susceptible to cavities. The saliva in your mouth neutralizes acids present in the food and washes away bacteria and other microorganisms in the mouth. When there is not enough saliva, the dry environment encourages the growth of bacteria and plaque accumulates faster. This causes tooth decay. Since saliva helps in mineralization, the decay-combating power of your tooth enamel is also decreased.
- Sores and Infections: Absence of saliva also makes you more prone to infections and sores in the mouth. Oral thrush is a common infection that people suffer. Dry mouth puts you at great risk of oral thrush. The condition is not only painful; it also makes swallowing and tasting difficult and causes bad breath.
- Stickiness and Burning: Without saliva, you will notice that your mouth feels sticky. It will also become difficult for you to chew or talk and your tongue will tend to stick. When your throat becomes dry as well, you will find choking to be a common instance. Some people even feel a burning sensation in their tongue. This is just one of the symptoms of dry mouth.
How to Treat Dry Mouth?
Since dry mouth can be caused due to a number of reasons, it is essential to discuss your symptoms with a dentist. Good oral hygiene habits can help you avoid dry mouth problems completely. Drinking plenty of water is also a requisite to avoid dry mouth. If your condition is triggered by medicine, you should talk to your doctor about substituting the medicine. Smoking and drinking alcohol should also be avoided if you have a dry mouth. For moderate conditions, over the counter moisture replacements can also provide relief.
If you are facing any issues related o a dry mouth, contact a dentist near you in Charlotte NC. The whole team at Promenade Center for Dentistry is here to help you.