Not only can dry mouth cause a lot of discomfort, but because saliva is your body’s way of naturally protecting and remineralizing teeth it can also contribute to conditions with your teeth and gums such as cavities, gum disease and more. Sometimes treating dry mouth is as simple as finding out what is causing it. Other times, it may need ongoing attention to help provide relief. Read on if you’d like to learn more with these 5 ways to treat dry mouth.
1. Drink Lots of Fluids
Hydration is key when suffering from dry mouth. Regardless of the cause, drinking adequate fluids is important to many functions of the body, including saliva production. It is generally recommended that you drink between a half an ounce to a full ounce for every pound that you weigh. This means that if you weigh 150 pounds, you should drink between 75 and 150 ounces a day, or around 10 to 19 cups. Remember that a drinking glass may be larger or smaller than an actual 8 ounce cup measurement, so it may be helpful to use a water bottle that displays measurements to keep track of your daily fluid intake.
Make sure to try to mostly choose drinks without ingredients that may cause staining or be harmful to teeth, such as dark teas or sugar that may lead to tooth decay.
2. Chew Sugar-Free Gum
Chewing sugar-free gum can be helpful to treat dry mouth especially if you’re looking for ways to treat dry mouth while on the go. Chewing gum can help because it stimulates the body’s saliva flow. Better yet, if you can find a gum with xylitol as the sweetening ingredient, it may actually benefit your teeth because xylitol has been shown to change the pH balance of the mouth to reduce the presence of bacteria and its ability to adhere to teeth, which can reduce the risk of cavities.
3. Suck on a Sugar-Free Hard Candy
Sucking on hard candy or throat lozenges can also help to stimulate saliva flow. Make sure the candy is also sugar-free so it won’t leave a sugary residue on your teeth that can cause tooth decay.
4. Check Your Medications
Beyond looking for ways to treat dry mouth, it may be helpful to find out if anything is contributing to it. A good place to start may be to look up any medications you take for possible side effects that may include dry mouth. Many common medications, both prescription and over-the-counter, can cause reduced saliva production and if dry mouth has become problematic for you while taking a medication then it might be helpful to talk to your doctor.
5. Talk to Your Dentist
If you’re searching for ways to treat dry mouth, it’s a good idea to make an appointment to talk to your dentist, who specializes in oral care and hygiene, about any possible causes and all your options available. If you’ve tried multiple ways to treat dry mouth and it’s still unresolved, your dentist may be able to recommend other treatments such as a special mouthwash or another product or treatment to help provide relief.
Call our Palm Desert Dental Office to make an appointment with a dentist who may be able to help you find out more about this topic, and improve your oral health.