• The Dangers of Dry Mouth: Causes, Associated Problems, and Treatment

    Dry mouth is a growing problem in dentistry.  On a daily basis, Dr. Carol Alvarado sees patients who suffer from dry mouth and the issues associated with dry mouth including tooth decay, gum disease, mouth sores and bad breath.

    dangers of dry mouth


    Dry mouth—also called xerostomia—results from an inadequate flow of saliva.

    It is not a disease, but a symptom of a medical disorder and/or most commonly, a side effect of popular medications including:

    • Blood pressure medications
    • Anti-depression/Anti-Anxiety
    • Diuretics
    • Pain killers
    • Antihistamines
    • Decongestants
    • Even neurological medications for treatment of anti-anxiety and ADHD.

    The combination of two or more of these medications dramatically increases dry-mouth effects.

    With regular saliva production, your teeth are constantly bathed in a mineral-rich solution that helps keep your teeth strong and resistant to decay.

    Dry mouth can lead to extensive tooth decay, gum disease, mouth sores and bad breath.

    Signs You May Have Dry Mouth

    • Extreme thirst.
    • Waking up in the night needing water.
    • Teeth feel rough like sand.
    • Cheeks stick to your teeth.
    • Lips feel dry.

    Treating Dry Mouth

    While there isn’t any cure for dry mouth, the sooner it gets diagnosed the less damage it does to your teeth.  Here are some tips for treating your dry mouth.

    • Swish with water in addition to drinking it.
    • Chew sugarless gum that contains glycerin and Xylitol.
    • Patients with dry mouth should have regular dental checkups. You should bring up-to-date medication list with you to your appointment.
    • Use a toothpaste made with Aloe Vera.

    Aloe Vera Toothpaste for Dry Mouth

    Most everyone knows the soothing benefits of Aloe Vera on sun-burned skin. However, Aloe Vera, is an ancient plant known for healing, moisturizing and antibacterial and anti-fungal properties.

    • When you suffer from dry mouth, you lose all the protective enzymes and good bacteria which makes you more prone to cavities. The antibacterial properties of Aloe Vera can help combat this bacteria war within the mouth.
    • Dry mouth can also lead to fungal infections.  Aloe Vera has been known to be both anti-bacterial and anti-fungal.
    • Additionally, mouth tissue on dry mouth patients can be very sensitive. Since Aloe Vera is so mild, it doesn’t cause any burning as usually associated with traditional toothpastes.
    • Aloe Vera is a natural ingredient that is powerful enough to destroy harmful bacteria, disinfect the mouth and fight infection.

    If you take any of the common medications that cause Dry Mouth, you are encouraged to schedule an exam with your dental professional for evaluation and treatment. There is a strong connection between your oral health and your overall health.  It’s called the “Mouth-Body Connection,” and by taking care of any Dry Mouth symptoms, you are reducing the risk of gum disease which can exasperate other conditions like heart disease, diabetes and even some cancers.


One Responseso far.

  1. Hi Erica,

    This is such a nice and informative article. Oral and Dental hygiene is highly underrated.

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