If your mouth feels sticky and dry, you likely suffer from dry mouth. It is an unpleasant sensation, but this condition also puts your oral health at risk. A dry oral environment allows the natural bacteria in the mouth to spread with ease across the teeth, heightening the risk for infections.
Sometimes, dry mouth occurs for reasons outside of your control, like medication side effects. But you can avoid this dental problem by following preventative tips. Read on to find advice from your Rosedale, MD dentist to fight dry mouth and therefore preserve your smile.
Tips for Getting Rid of Dry Mouth
When you are dehydrated, your mouth will produce less saliva to conserve water within the body, which will leave you with uncomfortable dry mouth. Your gums could be in danger of contracting an infection called gum disease in this case. This disease begins with inflamed gums and then can spread to eat away at the teeth and jaw, creating lasting damage like tooth loss.
Prevent gum disease and other oral health problems by staving off dry mouth. A major way you can fight dry mouth is to drink plenty of water to stay hydrated. You should drink at least eight eight-ounce glasses of water each day.
If you consume coffee or other items that tend to dehydrate you, you should drink even more water to make up for this. Drinking water will offer short-term relief from dry mouth, adding moisture to the mouth, and long-term relief because it combats dehydration.
Stimulate Saliva Production
If you notice that you have dry mouth, you can encourage saliva production through the acting of chewing. Dentists recommend chewing sugar-free gum to fight dry mouth symptoms because it will not affect your diet.
You will want to choose a sugar-free option to stimulate saliva production because sugar is notoriously harmful to your teeth. Sugar becomes acidic when it reacts with saliva, and the acid can then erode tooth enamel.
This will cause permanent damage to the dental structure and make teeth vulnerable to cavities and other problems. Avoid this risk while still combating dry mouth by sticking to sugar-free gum.
Consider Environmental Factors
Sometimes your surrounding environment could be the cause of your dry mouth symptoms. When you feel dry mouth, pay attention to the conditions of the space you are in. You might need to make changes to that area to combat dry mouth.
For instance, dry air can in turn dry out your mouth. If you notice this is causing your dry mouth, consider purchasing a humidifier. This device will add moisture to the air which can reduce your risk of developing dry mouth.
Factors outside of your control might also cause dry mouth. Some medication side effects may dry out your mouth, and if you sleep with your mouth open, you might also be susceptible to dry mouth. If you notice chronic dry mouth, contact your dentist. They can help you pinpoint the reasons for this symptom and then treat it so that you can preserve your oral health.