Dry Mouth Treatment Santa Rosa | Harry Albers DDS

Santa Rosa Dentist

1100 Sonoma Ave Suite E, Santa Rosa, CA 95405

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Dry Mouth

Do you suffer from dry mouth in Santa Rosa? Dry mouth, also called xerostomia, results from an inadequate flow of saliva, and is a symptom rather than a specific disorder. Adequate salivary flow lubricates oral tissues, cleanses the mouth and begins the digestive process as foods are chewed. When salivary flow is reduced, harmful organisms grow in the mouth.

For some people, the sensation of having a dry mouth is simply a nuisance. For others, the condition causes serious health problems. Left untreated, dry mouth may lead to oral yeast infection, a burning sensation, rampant tooth decay, bad breath and other oral health problems. If you have chronic dry mouth in Santa Rosa, you may also have difficulty swallowing.

Drying irritates the soft tissues, which can make them inflamed and more susceptible to infection. Without the cleansing and shielding effects of adequate salivary flow, tooth decay and periodontal (gum) disease become more common. Constant dryness and the lack of protection provided by saliva can contribute to bad breath. Dry mouth also causes full dentures to become less comfortable, because there is no thin film of saliva to help them adhere properly to oral tissues.
Prescribed and over-the-counter medications are the most common cause of dry mouth. In fact, dry mouth is a potential adverse side effect of more than 400 medications, including antihistamines, decongestants, painkillers, diuretics, antihypertensives and antidepressants. Read the literature that accompanies your medications and tell your dentist or physician if you think a medication is causing your dry mouth in Santa Rosa. In some cases, a different prescription may provide relief.

Dry mouth also may result from radiation treatment for head and neck cancers, salivary gland disease, emotional stress and autoimmune diseases such as diabetes and Sjogren's syndrome. Hormonal alterations associated with pregnancy and menopause also have been associated with dry mouth.
Increasing fluid intake can sometimes alleviate dry mouth. Your dentist or physician may also recommend using artificial saliva (available at local pharmacies) to keep oral tissues moist. Other remedies for dry mouth include:

  • sugar-free gum or candy (to stimulate salivary flow)
  • frequent sips of water
  • alcohol-free oral rinses
  • restricted intake of caffeine, alcohol and carbonated beverages.
If you suffer from dry mouth in Santa Rosa, regular dental checkups are essential. Tell your dentist what medications you are taking and any other information about your health that could help to treat your oral dryness. Our dental team can diagnose any problems in the early stages, when they can be corrected with greater ease.

Taking good care of your teeth and gums is also critical if you have dry mouth. Being diligent about oral hygiene will help to minimize decay and periodontal disease. Brush twice a day, and floss or use another interdental cleaner once a day to remove debris from between the teeth, where your toothbrush cannot reach. Your dentist may recommend additional fluoride products to help control tooth decay.

When choosing a dental product, check to see if it displays the American Dental Association Seal of Acceptance. This is your assurance that the company has demonstrated, through testing , that the product has met the ADA's criteria for safety and effectiveness.

To discuss treating your dry mouth in Santa Rosa with Dr. Albers and his team, please phone our offices to make an appointment on (707) 575-1190 today.

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