Dry mouth can cause oral health issues that can affect your smile and overall quality of life. Persistent dry mouth is not a normal sign of aging and may be a possible side effect of many common medications, a symptom of certain diseases or health conditions, or a side effect of substance abuse or cancer treatment.
This uncomfortable condition can lead to tooth decay, gum disease, mouth sores, cracked lips, bad breath and may affect your ability to eat and speak. It’s important to see a dentist and physician if you suffer from persistent dry mouth, so they can determine the cause and offer solutions to alleviate symptoms and stimulate saliva flow. Solutions may include drinking more water, limiting caffeine, avoiding tobacco and alcohol, rinsing with an alcohol-free mouthwash or using an over-the-counter saliva substitute.
In addition to seeing your dentist regularly, be sure to brush twice a day and floss daily. These are small, but essential steps you can take every day to live well and smile more.