Have you ever woken up in the morning feeling like your mouth was as dry as the Sahara desert? Your tongue feels sticky, your throat feels sore, and the little saliva that you may have left in your mouth feels thick and stringy. It's not a very appealing feeling!
If you've been fortunate enough, you've probably only woken up a few (if any) times likes this. But, for others, those feelings are an every day and all day occurrence.
The condition they have is called xerostomia, or simply put, dry mouth. Dry mouth is a condition in which the salivary glands in your mouth don't make enough saliva to keep your mouth moist and wet. In other words, saliva stimulation is decreased. Most people don't realize how beneficial saliva is, and everything it does for your health and wellbeing.
For instance, saliva helps prevent tooth decay by neutralizing acids that are produced by bacteria. It limits bacterial growth and washes away food particles. Saliva also enhances your ability to taste delicious foods, makes the food easier to chew and swallow, and the enzymes in saliva actually aid in the digestion process!
When saliva is decreased, and you suffer from dry mouth, it can have a huge impact on your general health, the health of your teeth and gums, and it can be a nuisance to your appetite and enjoyment of food. But, that's not all...
6 Unknown Facts About Dry Mouth
- Approximately 1 in every 4 people are affected by dry mouth.
- Over 500+ medications can cause dry mouth.
- Dry mouth can contribute to tooth decay and oral infections.
- Dry mouth is often uncomfortable and usually disrupts eating habits.
- Dry mouth can cause difficulty speaking, swallowing, bad breath, and difficulty chewing.
- Dry mouth often interrupts sleeping habits.
There are several causes of Dry Mouth to note:
- Side effect of various medications
- Result of Radiation/Chemotherapy
- Sjogren's Syndrome - a rare condition that directly affects the salivary glands
- Smoking & tobacco use
- Nerve damage
- Autoimmune Diseases
- Snoring, or breathing through the mouth
But, how do you know if you actually have dry mouth? Doctors say to look for the following symptoms:
- Dryness, or feelings of stickiness within the mouth
- Saliva that is thick and stringy
- Bad breath
- Difficulty chewing, speaking, or swallowing
- Dry, or sore throat
- Hoarseness, and laryngitis
- Dry, and seemingly cracked tongue
- Change of taste in your favorite foods, or food that you eat on a regular basis
The treatment for Dry Mouth varies greatly, and is based on the cause. However; here at Mountainside Medical Equipment, we have a plethora of supplies that will help ease the symptoms for Dry Mouth, as well as prevent any further problems with your teeth and gum health.
Oral toothpastes, such as Mi Paste products, provides restoration to demineralized tooth areas, protects against cavities, restores enamel, replaces lost minerals, improves saliva flow and fluoride uptake, and allows for a healthy oral environment. Mi Paste also adds an extra layer of protection to prevent against Dry Mouth.
Oral swab sticks are also ideal for anyone who is suffering from Dry Mouth. They help to refresh the mouth, as well as to soothe and lubricate the gums. Oral swab sticks are an especially perfect solution for anyone who is on restricted fluid intake.
Oral Sprays and Rinses allow for the mouth to be safely lubricated and moisturized for as long as eight hours a day. Providing soothing relief, these products have a great tasting flavor that leaves the mouth feeling gentle and fresh.
Gum and Lozenges have been proven to naturally increase saliva production by up to 400%! These products also contain powerful antioxidants from green tea, and the bacteria inhibiting, natural sweetener, Xylitol.
As always, consult with a physician before starting treatment for Dry Mouth on your own. Your doctor or dentist, will be able to suggest the best product for you based on your symptoms.