What is Dry Mouth?
Dry mouth is a medical condition where a person’s mouth will have reduced amount or absence of saliva. It is also known as Xerostomia in medical terms, and some of the other names for this condition are pasties, doughmouth, cottonmouth,
dooth or des. This condition is usually found when then salivary glands do not function properly, causing dry mouth. There are many effects of Dry Mouth like speech disabilities, increase in dental cavities, bad breath, and even mouth infections such as thrush. Some patients with dry mouth have even found it difficult to enjoy their food.
Dry Mouth or Xerostomia is usually a symptom of a disease rather than a disease by itself. It has also occurred as a side effect of some medication and adjusting the dosage can reduce it.
Signs of Dry Mouth
Some of the common signs of Xerostomia or dry mouth are:
• Bad breath
• Inflammation and splitting or cracking of lips.
• Cracking or splitting of inner lining of mouth. Some sides may become sore.
• Mouth becomes dry.
• Taste disorders
• Mouth infections such as thrush.
• Painful tongue.
• Increased thirstiness especially at night.
• Tongue ulcers
• Frequent gum diseases
• Tooth decay and plaque
• Difficulty in speaking
• Difficulty while swallowing and chewing
• Salivary gland infection
• Difficulty wearing dentures
• Saliva becomes sticky
• Saliva becomes stringy
The treatment of dry mouth can in turn reduce the risk of mouth sores, gum diseases and tooth decay. In most cases, the reduction in the production of saliva creates dry mouth, so by stimulating the salivary glands to increase the production, the dry mouth can be treated to a great extent.
The doctors would suggest the following to help in increasing the production of saliva.
The doctor might reduce the dosage of the medicines that is actually causing the dry mouth. If all these measures do not work, then the doctor might prescribe medications to moisturize the mouth.
Authored By Dr Sanjay N - Orthodontics & Dentofacial Orthopaedics, Bangalore