Ignoring Dry Mouth Can Lead To Long-Term Health Issues

by | Mar 22, 2021

If you have dry mouth, you cannot take the condition lightly, as it can dramatically affect your dental health. The following information offers a detailed summation.

Why Dry Mouth Develops

We can talk volumes about the complications that come from dry mouth or xerostomia. This reduced or absent saliva flow results from underlying medical conditions or maybe a side effect of radiation therapy to the head and neck. An impairment of salivary gland functioning can lead to xerostomia, as can the aging process. However, dry mouth is associated more with taking certain medications when one is older rather than aging.

Why Saliva Is Important

According to the Oral Cancer Foundation, normal functioning of the salivary gland happens because of the muscarinic M3 receptor’s stimulation. Saliva itself is defined as a clear and viscous water fluid, which is secreted from the submaxillary, sublingual, parotid, and smaller mucous glands in the mouth. The watery substance contains large amounts of bicarbonate and potassium ions and, to a lesser degree, chloride, and sodium ions. Antimicrobial constituents are also included in saliva. In turn, saliva provides many essential oral functions that cleanse the mouth, remove food debris, remineralize the teeth, and control the mouth’s pH.

Dry Mouth Complications

When the mouth is depleted of saliva, it can lead to dental decay, gum disease, and inflammation. That is why it is important to keep the mouth hydrated and the saliva flowing. Infections of the mouth can lead to health problems, including cancer, heart disease, and diabetes. That is because the germs that lead to oral infections can spread throughout the body. Therefore, you need to do all you can to alleviate dry mouth symptoms.

If you have a problem with dry mouth, contact us immediately. We can arrange a convenient time for an exam and consultation.