Dry Mouth Dangers: Why It’s More Serious Than You May Think

Toronto Dry Mouth Dangers

Patients in an around the Toronto area can count on the team at the Art of Dentistry to provide advanced general, cosmetic, and restorative dentistry treatment that improves dental health and smile aesthetics. This means addressing minor issues and major ones as well, and taking each seriously.

A common dental health problem that many people usually don’t consider is dry mouth. While a minor inconvenience, it may also be the sign of a major issue to be treated.

What is dry mouth?

Dry mouth refers to the loss of moisture in the mouth and the persistent lack of moisture for a prolonged amount of time. This is the result of the lack of saliva or saliva production, which may be brought on by a variety of things.

Common Causes of Dry Mouth

Some of the most common causes of dry mouth include the following:

  • Stress and anxiety
  • Dehydration
  • Blockage of the salivary glands
  • Tobacco products
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Age-related reductions in saliva production
  • Nerve damage to the head or neck
  • Side effects of medicines
  • Side effects of certain diseases
  • Side effects of medical treatments

Dry Mouth Can Make Tooth Decay and Gum Disease Worse

Dry mouth can make a case of tooth decay or a case of gum disease much worse, accelerating the damage done to the hard tissues and the soft tissues of your mouth. Dry mouth can also increase the rate at which cavities form and gum disease affects your gum tissue.

Dry Mouth Makes Speaking and Eating More Difficult

When you have dry mouth, simple tasks such as speaking and eating become quite difficult. Chewing some foods may be very arduous, and swallowing the food can be next to impossible.

Dry Mouth Makes Bad Breath Even Worse

When you produce saliva, it helps clear away food particles and dead cells that are in your mouth. Without saliva, the dead cells and food particles can fester in the mouth, making your breath much worse.

Dry Mouth May Be a Symptom of a Serious Health Problem

In addition to causing a number of dental problems, dry mouth may actually be a symptom of a serious health condition, such as oral cancer. It’s important that you have a dentist examine your issue as soon as possible and then determine the ideal way to treat your dry mouth.

Treatments for Dry Mouth

One common treatment for dry mouth is to suck on some sugar-free sour candies. This can stimulate saliva production if your salivary glands are blocked. Patients are also advised to stay well-hydrated through the day to help ensure dry mouth doesn’t occur.

If the dry mouth is pervasive and a result of advanced age, artificial saliva items are available. These tend to come in spray, lozenge, or gel form. The ideal option for your needs can be discussed in more detail with your dentist.

Tips for Preventing Dry Mouth

In order to prevent dry mouth, we recommend the following:

  • Quit using tobacco products
  • Limit your intake of alcoholic beverages
  • Avoid mouthwashes that contain alcohol
  • Reduce your consumption of caffeinated beverages
  • Stay well-hydrated throughout the day with water
  • Chew on sugar-free chewing gum
  • Avoid breathing through your mouth

Contact the Practice of Dr. Sol Weiss

For more information about dry mouth and what you can do to treat and prevent it, be sure to contact our cosmetic and restorative dentistry center today. At the Art of Dentistry, we want to make sure that you have all the information you need to have a healthy and beautiful smile.