The Dangers of Dry Mouth: Taking the Condition Seriously

Jan 14, 2015

At DeJesus Dental Group, we help patients throughout the greater Bridgeport area with a diverse array of dental health problems. This means offering the latest in advanced restorative dentistry to improve dental health and wellness as well as the best possible general dental care services to treat problems great and small. One such issue that seems minor but may be the sign of something major is dry mouth (xerostomia), which we’d like to consider in more detail right now.

What is dry mouth?

Dry mouth refers to a reduced saliva production from the salivary glands, causing difficulties in various forms. The dry mouth may be either a temporary condition or a long-term one.

Is dry mouth a serious problem?

Dry mouth can potentially be a serious problem, though it depends on its exact cause. If a case of dry mouth is the result of anxiety or nervousness, the issue is minor and will pass. If the dry mouth is persistent (e.g., caused by major health issues or the natural aging process), the dangers of the conditions can increase a fair amount.

Let’s consider the various levels of trouble that dry mouth can pose to people.

Dry Mouth and Minor Inconveniences

If you suffer from a minor case of dry mouth, it will pose some minor inconveniences, though thankfully they are not dangerous or harmful to your dental health. In this case, the dry mouth can make biting, chewing, and speaking difficult or uncomfortable.

Dry Mouth Has Negative Effects on Your Dental Health

Persistent dry mouth will lead to worse bad breath while also speeding up the process of tooth decay and gum disease. The problems with overall dental health can get much worse if the dry mouth goes untreated, leading to major problems with the strength and health of the teeth as well as issues with gum condition and recession.

Dry Mouth May Be a Sign of a Major Health Problem

In some cases, dry mouth can be a sign of a major dental health or general health issue. Blockages of the salivary glands, for instance, can be rather serious and the dry mouth will last until the blockage is addressed. In other instances, the dry mouth is an early sign or symptom of serious health problems or systemic conditions, such as some form of oral cancer.

If you experience persistent dry mouth paired with lesions, mouth pain, or other serious signs of a potential problem, be sure to meet with your dentist or general practitioner to undergo a full screening.

Methods of Treating Dry Mouth

There are different options out there for treating persistent dry mouth. If you have blocked salivary glands, your dentist may suggest that you suck on sour candies that are sugar-free in order to promote the production of saliva and help push the blockage out.

For dry mouth that persists but is not related to a serious systemic condition, the ideal treatment option is the use of artificial saliva products, which come in various spray, lozenge, and gel forms. These add moisture to the mouth and help address various issues with health and wellness.

Schedule a Consultation at DeJesus Dental Group

For more information about dry mouth and what you can do to improve your overall dental health and wellness, be sure to schedule an appointment today. At DeJesus Dental Group, we will work with you to ensure you have the healthiest smile possible.

Disclaimer: The information provided in this blog is for informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. Consult a qualified dental professional to determine the best dental/orthodontic treatment for your needs.