Saliva plays an essential role in maintaining dental health by providing teeth with the calcium and phosphate minerals that they need. If you are experiencing dry mouth it means that you have low levels of saliva production. This can be uncomfortable. Not only is the small amount of saliva being produced more acidic, but the bacteria present become more harmful which greatly increases the chances of developing tooth decay, gum disease and bad breath.
The most common symptoms of dry mouth include constant thirst, a sticky feeling in your mouth, bad breath along with a metallic taste, difficulty swallowing, and dry cracked lips. Many medications can cause dry mouth as well as decrease hydration levels. To stimulate saliva production, always try to stay well hydrated, and if you typically breathe through your mouth, try breathing through your nose instead. Chewing on a sugar-substituted xylitol-based chewing gum is another method to improve saliva flow.
For more information on how to eliminate dry mouth, contact Smiles Unlimited Dentistry, P.C. Dr. Richard M. Richman, D.D.S., and his staff can help diagnosis dry mouth and discuss a prescription saliva substitute or recommend an over the counter product that will help alleviate symptoms.