Monday, May 30, 2011

Xerostomia "Dry Mouth" Can Be A Serious Problem

Everyone experiences a dry mouth once in a while says Marietta dentist.  It can happen if you are under stress or upset. It is the uncomfortable feeling of needing more saliva in your mouth.   Saliva is important for the overall health of the mouth.  It aids in chewing, digestion, and contains antibodies that keep the mouth clean.

The salivary glands produce saliva, a liquid that helps the mouth function properly.  An inhibited or decreased flow results in dry mouth.  It can occur more frequently as a person ages. Products such as Biotene, is a mouthwash that provides relief for oral dryness.  It also helps loosen the natural biofilm that accumulates in the mouth.  It is alcohol free and soothes mouth sores caused by dry mouth.

Biotene Dry Mouth Toothpaste and toothpaste gel are also available to help fight dry mouth.  If you are one of the millions of Americans with dry mouth, brushing with Biotene Dry Mouth Toothpaste may be just the method for you to help maintain the health of your mouth.

When a mouth is persistently dry, gums infections can occur.  The infection can allow bacteria to enter the blood stream resulting in systemic inflammation. Many diseases have been linked to inflammation.

Dry mouth can occur for a multitude of reasons.  It can be a side effect of medication, cancer, radiation, chemotherapy, diabetes, and HIV/AIDS.  Salivary glands can be infected by a virus or bacteria.  Bacterial infections usually result from blockage of the duct causing dry mouth.  Antibiotics may be prescribed by your physician for a bacterial abscess.  Absence of saliva results in the inability to neutralize acids.  Surgical drainage may be necessary to relieve an abscess.  Warm salt water helps the healing process.  Autoimmune disease can attack the salivary glands resulting in dry mouth.

Dry mouth can be cause by a number of diseases or prescription drugs;
       
  • Sjogrens Syndrome
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  • Dehydration
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  • Anemia
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  • Diabetes
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  • Nerve damage
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  • Antidepressants
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  • Antihistamines
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  • Blood pressure medicine
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  • Muscle relaxants
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  • Chemotherapy
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  • Radiation
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  • Parkinson and Alzheimer's drugs

Possible symptoms of dry mouth;
       
  • cracked lips
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  • Red tongue and lips
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  • Tongue infection and irritation
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  • Thrush
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  • Trench mouth
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  • mouth sores
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  • difficulty swallowing
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  • diminished taste sensory
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  • difficulty speaking
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  • burning sensation
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  • Bad breath
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  • Increased plaque, tooth decay and gum disease
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  • Cracked or split skin in the corners of the mouth
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  • Sore throat
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  • Fungal infection in the mouth
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  • Thick saliva
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  • Swelling

Although treatments for dry mouth depend on the cause, there are a few tips to help alleviate discomfort
       
  • Carry a bottle of water for constant sipping
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  • Avoid drinks with caffeine
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  • Do not smoke tobacco products
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  • Avoid alcoholic beverages
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  • Chew sugarless gum may help stimulate glands
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  • Consult your dentist for products such as Biotene
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  • Suck on a sugarless candies
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  • Biotene Oral Rinse and Biotene Dry Mouth Toothpaste

Implementing consistent oral hygiene helps keep dry mouth under control, and visiting the dentist twice a year allows the condition to be monitored.  A referral may become necessary for more specific testing.

It is important to keep your mouth in the best oral condition possible.  Excellent home care and regular visits to the dentist help keep dry-mouth under control says Marietta dentist.