Having Xerostomia can be perfectly normal every once in a while. Though the name doesn’t sound casual and common, it is. Xerostomia is defined as dry mouth resulting from reduced or absent saliva flow. Perhaps it happens occasionally when you are nervous, upset, stressed or plain old thirsty. So what? Who cares? No big deal. However, if you are dealing with a dry mouth on a consistent basis, you should take it seriously and find a solution to the problem.
Dry mouth is caused by a decreased amount of saliva lubricating your mouth. It can be a sign of a serious health problem such as diabetes or autoimmune disease. Over 400 medications list dry mouth as a potential side effect. Other symptoms include oral infections, hoarseness, sore throat, bad breath, trouble tasting, burning sensation, dry throat, cracked lips, dry/rough tongue and mouth sores.
If you take a prescription medication every day, you might be suffering from dry mouth a side effect. Don’t be alarmed. Medication is the number one cause of dry mouth. For example, sinus medications inhibit salivary gland production, thus causing dry mouth. So while you’re downing Benadryl or Claritin like your life depends on it to put an end to that stuffy or runny nose, you might be stopping saliva from cultivating and lubricating your mouth. Ugh. Seems like you just can’t win… But you can!
One strategy for keeping your mouth moisturized is using a dry mouth rinse such as biotène ® Dry Mouth Oral Rinse. Biotène is composed of lubricants and moisturizers to keep your mouth less like the Sahara and more like the Caribbean. (We all know which place we’d prefer to be right about now.) By using a dry mouth oral rinse, you are preventing tooth decay and bad breath by making up for the lack of saliva. Biotène also makes dry mouth remedies in the form of toothpaste, gel and spray. On-the-go comfort? Yes, please!
WHAT TO AVOID
What can you do to keep dry mouth at bay and far away? Plenty. Avoid salty foods. Chew sugarless gum. Drink water. Abstain from alcohol, caffeine, carbonated beverages and smoking (duh!). This may be incredibly inconvenient and annoying, but snacking on ice chips or sucking on ice cubes will wet your mouth in a nanosecond. It might be a challenge, but if you can avoid dry foods like toast and crackers, you can reduce the dryness in your mouth.