Ever feel like you have cotton balls in your mouth? If so, you were likely experiencing what we call “dry mouth.”
For anyone who has experienced dry mouth, you know that dry mouth isn’t a comfortable feeling. Dry mouth can lead to your tissue and teeth feeling sticky. This can make talking feel more challenging and difficult. Dry mouth also causes cavities concerns because it increases your chances of getting cavities.
While dry mouth can be caused by many different factors, the most common one is due to medication side effects. Hormone changes, stress, sickness, and aging can also play into experiencing dry mouth. The good news is that even if you have some of these factors working against you, your mouth doesn’t have to stay dry forever.
We always encourage and recommend treating the causes of dry mouth over just treating the symptoms but sometimes treating the reasons isn’t possible. Following these 5 simple tips can help get rid of or at least reduce your dry mouth:
Drink More Water
Drinking water serves many purposes in keeping our mouths healthy. Water helps to keep our tissues moist and it also helps to flush out toxins. Replacing sugary drinks with water can also help to reduce your risk of cavities.
Suck On Sugarfree Candy
Sucking on candy causes salivary glands to produce more saliva. This increase in saliva is a great thing if you are someone who struggles with dry mouth. One catch though is that the candy should be sugar-free candy. Otherwise, the sugar-filled candy will be increasing your risk of cavities.
Also, chewing on sugar-free gum can have this same benefit of increasing saliva production.
Avoid Certain Medications
Studies and surveys have shown that many medications carry the side effect of causing dry mouth (xerostomia). If you notice that the medication you are taking is causing serious dry mouth, it would be worth mentioning to your doctor. There may be another medication that doesn’t cause this for you. NEVER change your medication, though, without first speaking to your doctor.
Common types of medications that are known for causing dry mouth are:
- Hormone Medications
Avoid Breathing Through Your Mouth
Mouth breathing is known for drying out your mouth. Ever wake up in the morning and find that your mouth was insanely dry? Chances are you were breathing through your mouth while you were sleeping.
Mouth breathing can be a challenging habit to break. You may breathe through your mouth because you can’t breathe through your nose. If this is the case for you, it may be beneficial to have an evaluation done by an ENT doctor to rule out any allergies.
Try Over-The-Counter Saliva Substitutes
After trying to get to the base cause of your xerostomia and not having any luck, you may need to resort to over-the-counter saliva substitutes. These are safe products that help to act as saliva if your body isn’t making enough.
It is essential to realize that while these products can help in the short term, they aren’t likely to cure your xerostomia.
Don’t wait another day. There are many simple things that you can try to eliminate your dry mouth. Remember that keeping up with routine dental check-ups is one of the best ways to be sure that your mouth is healthy and free of cavities. Please reach out to your dentist if you have any questions about your dry mouth. They can evaluate your specific situation and find the best options for treating your dry mouth.