All of us will encounter issues with our mouths at some point, and one of the common things patients often experience is a feeling of dry mouth. This is excessive dryness of the mouth most commonly brought on by things like dehydration, stress, and lack of saliva. This is a pretty common condition and not something to be immediately alarmed about. However, persistent, chronic dry mouth can lead to more serious issues, such as periodontal disease.
This is why it is important to gain more of an understanding of what dry mouth is, what can cause it, and how you can treat it. All patients deserve to have a confident smile and healthy and strong teeth. This is why you need to make sure you do as much as you can to get this process sorted out, and understand what it takes to make the most of the services and procedures we offer.
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Dr. Stephen Brown.
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What is Dry Mouth & What Can It Be a Symptom Of?
Dry mouth is a condition where the inside of the mouth feels uncomfortably dry. Now, this can happen for a variety of common reasons and usually dissipates after a short time. However, excessive and consistent dry mouth is a condition known as xerostomia, and this can be a cause for concern.
Xerostomia is a condition that occurs when the saliva glands that keep the mouth moist are not working properly. This can, as you might imagine, lead to an array of different issues, and can cause problems with things like eating, swallowing, and chewing. Not to mention the fact that this greatly increases the risk and likelihood of tooth decay. Saliva is a crucial component in preventing oral bacteria from spreading too much in the mouth. This is why you need to address the issues of dry mouth, what can cause it, and look at how it can be treated.
At The Perio Group, we have a skilled and experienced dental team who have a wealth of experience in dealing with issues like dry mouth, and treating these issues before they get worse. Contact us to receive the benefits of our treatments and services which help you try to combat dry mouth in the best possible way.
What Causes It?
Now, it is important to gain an understanding of what can cause dry mouth in order to come up with ideas for how you are able to combat and treat it. Xerostomia can be caused by a number of different things. Of course, earlier we touched upon things like dehydration and stress that can lead to this as a problem, but what else can cause excessive dry mouth to occur?
As is often the case, some medications can have side effects, and one of the things that can cause dry mouth is the use of certain medications. Studies seem to illustrate that in the United States, there are over 500 different forms of over the counter and prescription medications that can cause dry mouth as a side effect. If you are taking some of these medications, and you are concerned about the impact of xerostomia, you should consult your doctor to see if there is an alternative.
Some chemotherapy drugs, as well as radiotherapy treatment, can cause dry mouth to occur. Radiation treatment to the head and/or neck can damage the saliva glands, and could well lead to dry mouth, sometimes permanently. Unfortunately, this is something you are going to have to deal with if you are serious about getting the best possible treatment for your cancer.
There are a variety of diseases that can cause problems with things like dry mouth, and it’s helpful to understand what these are. For instance, some autoimmune diseases can cause a variety of instances where the body attacks its own saliva or moisture glands, and this is something that can cause dry mouth.
A lot of people like to look for their own ways of dealing with treatment for dry mouth, and there are certain things you can do to help with this. Make sure you seek professional treatment if the symptoms progress or get worse, but, if you want to try some home remedy ideas in the meanwhile, then here are a few of the most effective things you can do to help with this.
Drinking lots of water, regularly, can be one of the best ways of being able to keep your mouth moist and guard against dry mouth.
Avoid certain medications
Of course, we understand that sometimes this is not feasible, but where possible, it is important to try to make sure you avoid certain medications that can increase the risk of dry mouth. This generally includes things like antihistamines.
Make lifestyle changes
There are a lot of things that play a part in helping you make the most of this moving forward, and it is important that you come up with some of the best ways of avoiding and reducing the risk of dry mouth. That means things like avoiding smoking and drinking less caffeine and alcohol in the process.
If you feel like you need some professional guidance or treatment to deal with xerostomia, you should contact us and schedule an appointment with Dr. I. Stephen Brown. As one of the best periodontists in Philadelphia, Dr. Brown and his team of experts are perfectly placed to be able to treat your dry mouth.