Have you ever experienced dry mouth? Your body’s ability to make enough saliva in your mouth is an important role in your overall well-being.
The salivary glands make this important concoction while the ducts in your mouth dutifully wash the saliva around, keeping it well lubricated. These glands go berserk when you eat. Smelling food, or even just thinking about it boosts saliva production tenfold.
In terms of dental health, saliva defends against tooth decay and gum disease:
– Saliva eradicates bacteria in the mouth because it is antimicrobial.
– Saliva on the teeth saves the enamel from acids and bacteria.
– Saliva carries away food particles that cause tooth decay.
– Minerals in saliva rebuild enamel surfaces on teeth.
– Enzymes in saliva aid digestion and make it easier to swallow.
– Saliva creates the lubrication critical for speech.
– Saliva helps to keep breath fresh.
The dental terminology for insufficient saliva is xerostomia, also called or “dry mouth”. Several health problems and some types of medications can cause xerostomia and when you are not salivating properly the below problems arise:
– Feeling of thirst and bothersome parched feeling in the mouth.
– Many forms of gum disease.
– Tooth decay
– Bacterial infections, yeast and fungus.
– Digestion issues
– Swallowing problems
What to Do:
– Don’t become dehydrated. Drink lots of water daily.
– See your dentist or doctor to diagnose what is causing the problem
– Examine the medications you are taking
– Try chewing gum or sucking on candy
– Maintain good oral hygiene
– Avoid salty, spicy and acidic foods
– Ask your dentist to prescribe an artificial saliva spray
If you believe you have poor saliva production, Dr. Nathan Lester would be happy to discuss it with you. Please contact Bear River Dental to make an appointment at: 307.789.5608, or come by our office in Evanston, Wyoming.