Dry Horrors

dry mouth dentist north shore

This issue we’ll address another common area people come in with quite often… dry mouth.

Not just a result of too much partying the night before, when it happens frequently we need to take note.

Dry mouth can be more than just an inconvenience, it can also be the sign of major health problems.


Common Symptoms of Dry Mouth: 

• Frequent thirst

• A sticky, dry feeling in the mouth

• A burning or tingling sensation in the mouth and especially on the tongue

• A dry, red, raw tongue

• Problems speaking or difficulty tasting, chewing, and swallowing

• Bad breath


Common Causes of Dry Mouth: 

• Dehydration

• Anxiousness or nervousness

• Depression

• Stress

• Blockage of the salivary glands

• Side effects from certain medications

• Symptoms of certain medical conditions

• The natural aging process


Dangers of Dry Mouth: 

Gum Disease – When your mouth is dry, it creates ideal conditions for the bacteria in the mouth to thrive. This bacterial infection of the gums can lead to gum disease and other major dental problems if left untreated.

Tooth Decay/Dental Erosion – A dry mouth can result with more rapid tooth decay and can also cause tooth erosion. Tooth erosion happens when the pH in the mouth is too acidic, resulting in damage and weakening of the tooth structure.

Serious Health Problems – Dry mouth can also be the sign of serious health issues. A blockage of the salivary glands may be the sign of a tumour or abnormal growth. Certain cancers and oral health conditions can also cause dry mouth to occur.


Treating Dry Mouth itself: 

To increase the amount of moisture in the mouth, hydration with water is a must, though there are also artificial saliva options that can be helpful as well, such as chewing sugar-free gum.

Without saliva, gum disease is more likely to occur, requiring your dentist or hygienist to thoroughly clean and de-scale the teeth. In cases where tooth erosion occurs, dental restorations can be used to fix damaged teeth. If a patient loses teeth as a result of any of these dental problems, it’s not uncommon for dental implants to be used as well.

It’s important that the root cause of dry mouth is addressed, such as the systemic disease or the oral health condition associated with it. Should you notice persistent dry mouth, it’s a good idea to speak with your general practitioner or make an appointment with a dentist who can identify the exact cause of the problem.

Phone the friendly team at The Dental Experts in Takapuna today on 09-4861605 and we’ll be happy to answer any queries you may have.