Dry Mouth: Causes and Treatments

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Dry Mouth can be caused by taking certain medications, ageing issues and from certain treatments such as radiation, chemotherapy, and other cancer treatments. The treatment for Dry Mouth can vary and is often dependent on the cause and severity.

What is Dry Mouth?

Dry mouth, otherwise known as Xerostomia, is a condition where the salivary glands in your mouth do not produce enough saliva to keep your mouth moist. In Australia, Dry Mouth is common with almost 1 in 10 people, and 1 in 4 older Australians, suffering from Xerostomia. Dry Mouth ranges in severity from being a simple nuisance to a more extreme condition which can affect your ability to enjoy food and speak normally. Xerostomia can be a temporary and, in some cases, a permanent side effect of its causative factor.

Dry Mouth and Throat Causes

Dry mouth is a result of the salivary glands in your mouth not producing enough saliva. Saliva is extremely important in not only keeping your mouth wet but also assisting with digestion, cleansing, and protecting the teeth from decay. Dry Mouth can be caused by many reasons and varies greatly among individuals and can include:

Dehydration

Not drinking enough water or consuming tea, coffee or other diuretics lead to dry mouth symptoms.

Medications

There are hundreds of medications including over the counter drugs, antidepressants, blood pressure and anti-anxiety medications.

Ageing

Changes in the body’s ability to adequately produce saliva, medications and long-term health problems often cause dry mouth.

Cancer Treatment

Chemotherapy and radiation can alter the quality and ability for saliva to be produced. These side effects can be temporary or permanent.

Health Conditions

Conditions such as Sjogren’s Syndrome, diabetes, stroke, oral thrush and HIV/Aids can cause dry mouth.

Tobacco and Alcohol

Drinking alcohol, smoking, and chewing tobacco all increase dry mouth symptoms.

Drug Use

Methamphetamine and marijuana use can cause dry mouth.

Dry throat causes are usually as a direct result of Dry Mouth and often result in the feeling of a dry mouth and throat even after drinking water.

Dry Mouth Treatment

The treatment of dry mouth and throat usually depends on the causing factor and how severe the symptoms are, which can include:

  • Tooth Decay and Gum Disease
  • Oral Thrush or Candidiasis
  • Mouth Sores
  • Cracked Lips
  • Poor Nutrition

Dry Mouth treatments aim to alleviate dry mouth symptoms by increasing salivary flow, preventing tooth decay, and managing the associated medical conditions. There are various dry mouth and throat remedies which can be integrated into your daily routine to help fix dry mouth:

Drink Plenty of Water

Or suck on ice chips throughout the day to remain hydrated, moisten the mouth and help with lubricating the mouth when eating/swallowing.

Limit Caffeine and Alcohol

Foods and drinks containing these will lead to oral irritation and discomfort.

Limit Sugary Foods

These stimulate plaque production which results in tooth decay, especially when dry mouth symptoms are already present.

Quit Smoking

Smoking and chewing tobacco increase dry mouth and bad breath symptoms.

Maintain Good Oral Hygiene

Brush and floss (or clean between) your teeth, ask your dentist whether you would benefit from a speciality Dry Mouth Product.

Dry Mouth Products

There are a range of Toothpastes, Mouthwashes, Sprays, Gels and Lozenges which provide instant and long-lasting relief.

Talk to Your Doctor and Dentist

The most important dry mouth treatment is to have your teeth and general health examined.

Our Products to Help with the Management of Dry Mouth

The House of Mouth offers a range of Dry Mouth Products which are proven to effectively prevent, manage and alleviate the symptoms of dry mouth. These can be easily integrated into your daily oral hygiene routine or used as needed to provide immediate dry mouth relief.

Dry Mouth Toothpastes

cloSYS Sensitive Toothpaste is a gentle, non-burning and irritation free, fluoride-based toothpaste clinically proven to fight bad breath and dry mouth.

Dry Mouth Mouthwashes

cloSYS Ultra-Sensitive and Colgate Dry Mouth Mouthwash are super gentle mouthwashes which can be used twice daily after brushing.

Dry Mouth Lozanges

Xylimelts and Ekulf Moisters can be used anytime throughout the day and night to provide lasting relief from night time and morning dry mouth

Dry Mouth Sprays

GC Dry Mouth Gel, Oracoat Xyligel and cloSYS Oral Spray can be used as needed to provide instant relief from dry mouth whilst on the go, at work or home.

Dry Mouth at Night

The cause of dry mouth at night can be a result of a normal nighttime decrease in saliva production or can be a symptom of an acute illness or underlying medical condition. Following the home remedies for dry mouth (above) can assist in preventing dry mouth whilst sleeping. Products such as Xylimelts Stick-on Melts can be used at night or throughout the day to freshen breath and are proven to effectively reduce morning dry mouth.

Remember, it is always recommended to see a Dental or Health Professional should your dry mouth cause pain, discomfort or have been an ongoing issue for some time.

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