Have you ever felt that your mouth is dry when you wake up in the morning? Or do you suffer from a dry mouth all day long? Then you share the same experiences as many others about the discomfort and impact of dry mouth on your daily life. Dry mouth is more than just an inconvenience, it’s a condition that can affect your mouth and overall health.
What is Dry Mouth?
Dry mouth is called xerostomia. Saliva provides oral and dental care. It provides oral care and prevents many diseases. At the same time, saliva has an effect on keeping the mouth moist and adjusting the pH balance. The low secretion of saliva causes various problems and diseases.
Insufficient salivary ratio causes a decrease of many minerals such as calcium and phosphate in the salivary structure. The low secretion of saliva creates an environment for the weakest microorganisms to grow.
Saliva helps digest food. It is important in oral and dental care. It prevents tooth decay. It prevents the formation of infections by controlling the bacteria in the mouth.
It also aids in chewing and swallowing. Dry mouth occurs due to impaired salivary secretion functions of the salivary glands. Decreased saliva secretion causes various problems in the mouth. This situation is seen as a factor in the emergence of serious problems. Therefore, dry mouth is an inconvenience to be reckoned with.
Dry mouth is a disease that needs to be treated. This disease causes several problems. It even causes gingivitis. Dry mouth occurs as a result of various diseases.
Dry mouth can occur due to conditions such as blood pressure, allergies, radiotherapy and chemotherapy, antidepressants, and drug use. Dry mouth manifests itself with various symptoms. The person experiences constant thirst, bad breath, difficulty speaking, burning sensation in the tongue, taste disturbance, dry lips, cracked lip margins, and difficulty using dentures.
Dry mouth symptoms
Dry mouth is a medical condition known as xerostomia and is a common complaint many people experience from time to time. Dry mouth occurs when the salivary glands do not produce enough saliva or the quality of the saliva decreases. Saliva is an important secretion that helps moisten the mouth and throat, digest food, protect teeth, and sound correct when speaking. Therefore, the symptoms of dry mouth can be bothersome and affect the quality of daily life.
The symptoms of dry mouth can vary from person to person, but the following symptoms are most common:
1. Not enough saliva in the mouth
People with dry mouth experience a dry feeling in the mouth. The mouth may feel drier and stickier than usual.
2. Feeling thirsty
A constant feeling of thirst can be a sign of a dry mouth. A person may feel thirsty again shortly after drinking water.
3. Difficulty swallowing
Saliva performs a function that makes it easier to swallow food and drink. In the case of a dry mouth, swallowing can be difficult and it can become more difficult to swallow food.
4. Bad breath
Saliva cleans the bacteria in the mouth and prevents bad breath. Insufficient saliva production can increase the problem of bad breath.
5. Tongue and lip problems
People with a dry mouth may experience problems such as a burning sensation on the tongue, cracks or a white coating on the tongue. Lips can also become chapped and irritated.
6. Taste disturbance
Saliva helps the sense of taste work. The sense of taste may be impaired in people with dry mouth and they may experience the problem of not fully enjoying the food.
7. Tooth decay
Saliva protects teeth against tooth decay and strengthens enamel. Decreased saliva secretion in a dry mouth can increase the risk of dental caries.
8. Speech difficulties
A dry mouth can affect speech. If you don’t have enough saliva to moisten the vocal cords, it can be difficult to produce a voice while speaking.
What Causes Dry Mouth?
Dry mouth is a common condition that can be caused by many different causes. This condition, medically called xerostomia, occurs when the salivary glands cannot produce enough saliva or when the quality of the saliva decreases. There are many possible causes of dry mouth, and here are some common causes:
Dry mouth can occur as a side effect of many medications. Some medications, such as antidepressants, antihistamines, blood pressure medications, diuretics, antipsychotics, can decrease saliva production. These drugs can cause dry mouth by affecting the work of the salivary glands.
Some health conditions can lead to dry mouth. Conditions such as diabetes, thyroid disorders, Sjögren’s syndrome, HIV/AIDS and Parkinson’s disease can cause dry mouth by affecting saliva production. Such medical conditions can affect the function of the salivary glands, causing the problem of dryness.
Oral health problems
Dry mouth can be caused by oral health problems. Gum disease can reduce saliva production by affecting the salivary glands. In addition, oral infections or other mouth problems that cause dry mouth can also cause dry mouth.
Stress and anxiety
Intense stress and anxiety can negatively affect saliva production. When we are stressed or anxious, we are more likely to have a dry mouth. This is due to hormonal changes related to the body’s stress response.
If mouth breathing is frequent due to conditions such as nasal congestion or sleep apnea, it can lead to dry mouth. When breathing through the mouth, instead of breathing through the nose, the mouth becomes dry and the flow of saliva decreases.
Smoking and alcohol consumption
Smoking and drinking alcohol can reduce saliva production and lead to dry mouth. Smoking and alcohol adversely affect the function of the salivary glands, causing dry mouth.
Insufficient amount of water in the body can cause dry mouth. Insufficient water consumption reduces saliva production and causes dry mouth. In hot weather or during excessive exercise, the body needs more water and the risk of dehydration increases.
What Causes Dry Mouth?
A dry mouth is caused by the lack of saliva. This causes serious problems. It allows for easy accumulation of bacterial plaque and food debris. This causes gum disease and tooth decay.
Saliva acts as a cleansing mechanism. It keeps the tooth surfaces clean. This mechanism disappears in people with a dry mouth. Therefore, tooth surfaces do not stay clean.
At the same time, saliva prevents the formation of dental caries. It cleans the tooth surfaces, prevents acids and balances the pH value. A dry mouth causes cavities. It causes several problems in people using dentures. Therefore, dry mouth should be taken seriously.
Ways to prevent dry mouth
Dry mouth is an annoying problem that many people suffer from. It occurs when the salivary glands do not produce enough saliva or the quality of the saliva decreases. Dry mouth can negatively affect quality of life, threaten oral health and make daily activities such as speaking and eating and drinking difficult. Below are some effective ways to prevent dry mouth:
Drink enough water
Drinking enough water is essential for the proper functioning of your body and salivary glands. By drinking at least 8-10 glasses of water a day, you can maintain your body’s fluid balance and support saliva production. Don’t forget to drink more water, especially in hot weather or when exercising.
Avoid sugary and caffeinated drinks
Sugary drinks and caffeinated drinks can increase dry mouth. Consumption of such drinks can reduce saliva production. Instead, opt for healthier, saliva-producing drinks such as water, herbal teas, or sugar-free drinks.
Take care of your oral health
Protecting your oral health is important to prevent dry mouth. Brush your teeth regularly, floss and visit the dentist for regular checkups. Intraoral infections and dental caries can affect saliva production, so it is important to take care of your oral hygiene.
Avoid smoking and alcohol
Smoking and drinking alcohol can make dry mouth worse. Both smoking and alcohol reduce saliva production and lead to dry mouth. Therefore, avoiding smoking and alcohol is important to prevent dry mouth.
Chew sugar-free gum
Chewing sugar-free gum can increase saliva production. Chewing gum stimulates the salivary glands and moistens the mouth. However, it is important to choose gum that contains no sugar and is made with sweeteners such as aspartame, rather than sugary gum.
Keep in a humid environment
Dryness and lack of moisture can cause dry mouth. Therefore, it is important to be in a humid environment and to moisten the interior. Using a humidifier or water bowl at home can help reduce dry mouth.
Dry mouth is a symptom of what disease?
Dry mouth can occur due to diseases such as diabetes, yeast infection, kidney failure, anemia, thyroid disease, tuberculosis. Even Alzheimer’s disease can cause dry mouth.
What to do to relieve dry mouth?
To avoid dry mouth, it is necessary to drink water regularly, not to consume alcohol, not to smoke tobacco, not to consume salt and sugar during the day, to chew sugar-free gum and to use toothpastes that do not affect salivary secretion.
What Causes Dry Mouth?
Dry mouth can occur for several reasons. The medications that the person has taken, the chemotherapy treatment, not drinking water, using alcohol, smoking, diseases that affect the salivary glands and hormonal imbalance are some of the causes that cause dry mouth.
What does dry mouth mean?
Saliva is needed to clean the mouth and grind food. Saliva controls the fungus and bacteria in the mouth. Dry mouth occurs when not enough saliva is produced.
Which doctor should I go to for a dry mouth?
If you have a dry mouth, you can first consult a dentist. For people who suffer from a dry mouth for a long time, it is the right choice to turn to an internist for treatment and diagnosis.
Which Vitamin Causes Dry Mouth?
The calcium balance is disturbed by an excess of vitamin D. As a result of the deterioration of the calcium balance, some side effects occur. Dry mouth is also one of these side effects.