Xerostomia, or dry mouth syndrome, is the dry feeling in the mouth due to the reduction of the amount of your saliva. Saliva is vital in cleansing the mouth, and in digesting food. It gives your mouth its much-needed moisture, and it also helps in preventing infection in the mouth by getting rid of its causes, such as fungi and bacteria.
Here are the top causes of dry mouth syndrome:
1. Side effect of certain treatments and medications. There are some medical treatments that can damage the salivary glands that produce saliva. These treatments include anything that involves radiation and chemotherapy.
This can also be due to the side effects of prescription and non-prescription medicines that are intended to treat ailments, such as allergies, acne, depression, Parkinson's disease, and colds. In addition, dry mouth can be experienced as a side effect from taking sedatives and muscle relaxants.
2. Nerve injuries. This can happen as a result of an injury to the nerves in the head and neck areas, which typically follows after undergoing surgery.
3. Dehydration. There are certain conditions that can cause excessive sweating, which can lead to dry mouth. These conditions include fever, vomiting, burns, and diarrhea.
4. Side effect of certain illnesses. You are prone to experience the condition if you are suffering from ailments that include anemia, hypertension, stroke, HIV/AIDS, cystic fibrosis, mumps, and diabetes. This also happens when you are under too much pressure and stress, or when your body is undergoing hormonal changes, such as when you are pregnant or entering the menopausal stage.
5. Vices. The condition can be aggravated by bad lifestyle habits, such as chewing tobacco and smoking. This can also be caused by breathing through your mouth too often or snoring.
6. Removal of the salivary glands through surgery.
Dry mouth syndrome can affect anyone of any age, but it is more common in adults. Everybody experiences its symptoms in varying degrees at some point.
Here are the common symptoms of the condition:
- Your saliva feels thick.
- Your throat is dry, and there is a sticky feeling in the mouth.
- The tongue feels dry due to insufficient amount of saliva in your mouth.
- Foul breath.
- Sore throat.
- Cracked lips.
- Having difficulty in swallowing and talking.
- Infection in the mouth.
What To Do
When the condition is already causing trouble in your everyday life, go to a dental office in Oxon Hill MD, and have it checked. Make sure that you tell your dentist about your health history, which include the treatments you have been through, and medications that you are taking.
When you experience several symptoms at a time, avoid any beverages that contain caffeine and alcohol. Clean your mouth and brush your teeth twice a day, because the condition can speed up the process of tooth decay.
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