Dry Mouth

Dry mouth is a condition caused by the lack of saliva necessary to moisten the mouth. Saliva is important for several reasons. A moist mouth is necessary to facilitate in chewing, swallowing and speaking and prevents tooth decay by washing away food and bacteria.


  • Dryness and burning of the mouth and throat.
  • Cracked lips.
  • Difficulty chewing, swallowing and speaking.
  • Frequent thirst.
  • Increased tooth decay.


  • Systemic diseases: AIDS, Diabetes and Parkinson disease.
  • Radiation to the head and neck: resulting in damaged salivary glands.
  • Medications.

The treatment for dry mouth can vary depending on the cause. It is important to see the dentist or physician for examination and diagnosis. Medication induced dry mouth can be treated by changing the medication or adjusting the dose, or if caused by other reasons the use of saliva substitutes may be recommended along with frequent sipping of water.

It is also suggested to avoid the following, which aggravate dry mouth:

  • Beverages with caffeine such as tea, coffee, and soft drinks.
  • Tobacco and alcohol use.
  • Spicy or salty foods.

Is it crucial for dry mouth sufferers to maintain good oral hygiene to protect against tooth decay. Regular brushing, flossing, fluoride rinses, and dental check-ups will allow these patients to maintain a healthy mouth and teeth.