Approximately one in five seniors deal with dry mouth, though many more patients are complaining of poor salivary flow due to “mask mouth” from the pandemic. Regardless of how it emerges, dry mouth needs to be taken care of as it can have a negative effect on overall oral health. Saliva is necessary as it moisturizes the mouth and also protects it from becoming dry enough to lead to cavities, gum disease, and oral infections.
What is the cause of dry mouth?
There are many reasons why a patient might be dealing with a condition such as dry mouth. These include:
- Wearing masks for COVID-19 protection for work and social activities
- Taking a medication that has a known side effect of dry mouth
- Undergoing radiation or chemotherapy for cancer
- Smoking cigarettes
What are signs of dry mouth?
Symptoms of dry mouth may include:
- Thick saliva
- Persistent bad breath
- Swollen, red gum tissues
- Poor denture fit and function
- Difficulty eating or swallowing
- Cracked tongue surface or lips
What are some tips for dealing with dry mouth?
Patients who have been diagnosed with dry mouth by Dr. Joseph Cavallo will want to speak to him about ways to deal with this condition and protect their smile from damage. Below are some recommendations:
- Brush the teeth with a soft toothbrush twice a day
- Utilize a toothpaste with fluoride when brushing
- Floss or use interdental cleaners at least once a day
- Avoid mouthwash that has alcohol in it
- Use dry mouth products available over-the-counter or by prescription
- Keep the mouth moist during the day by sipping water
- Increase salvia flow with saliva substitute or sugar-free lozenges
Are you concerned about dry mouth?
Dry mouth can significantly impact your oral health and wellness, so it is important that you not only get it diagnosed, but then work with your dentist to keep the saliva flow increased. Dr. Joseph Cavallo and his team in Woodbridge, VA are here to help! Call (703) 490-5888 to request a consultation visit at 12502-A Lake Ridge Drive and get started learning more about maintaining your smile’s beauty and health.