Dr. Katie Jones from Southeast Family Dental talks about dry mouth and demonstrates some products you can use to help alleviate dry mouth. Dr. Jones also discusses the causes of dry mouth including medications, dehydration and autoimmune diseases.
Hello, I’m Dr. Jones from Southeast Family Dental and I’m gonna talk to you a little bit today about dry mouth and some products that can help.
There are three common causes that I want to talk to you about as far as what can cause a dry mouth. Most likely, it’s due to medications but also someone can have a dry mouth if they are dehydrated or even have an autoimmune disease that causes your your glands not to produce enough saliva.
So, why is this a big deal? Someone with dry mouth can have pain or discomfort. Dry mouth can cause bad breath, as well as lead to an increased risk for developing cavities. Your saliva is made up of minerals and these minerals in the saliva can help protect the teeth and kind of coat the teeth during sleep or throughout the day which helps to protect from cavities. So, if you are lacking saliva, then you are going to be at a higher risk of developing cavities.
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As far as the discomfort that can be felt with a dry mouth, many people describe it as a burning feeling or their mouth feeling so dry that they have trouble with speaking or even eating.
What can you do about dry mouth?
So, the question is, what can you do if you have a dry mouth to relieve these symptoms or even make it feel a little bit better? The first thing I would recommend is to make sure that you’re hydrated. Drinking enough water will absolutely help, even momentarily, to relieve your symptoms but also, if there is dehydration, then drinking more water will help to get rid of the dry mouth altogether.
There are also some products that you can switch to if you have a dry mouth. There are toothpastes and mouthwashes that are formulated specifically for people with dry mouth. Biotene is a brand that actually removes some of the agents in their toothpastes that will dry you out, specifically sodium lauryl sulfate among others, as well as add minerals to the toothpaste that will again help to protect your teeth and, that way there are minerals present that might not be due to the lack of saliva.
Their mouthwash functions in the same way, and both are just more gentle so that the mouth, if it’s already feels like it’s burning or painful, it will be more gentle on the tissue so that the patient will feel more comfortable.
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Biotene gel for dry mouth
They also make a gel that actually we’ll try out for you guys today, as well as a dry mouth spray that we recently found and I have a couple of those in the office today and I will be trying those out so we can see what they’re like.
So, this is the moisturizing gel. It is a Biotene gel and the directions say to put an inch-long portion on your tongue and smooth it around. So, I will kind of try that out and see how it goes. I actually do have dry mouth and so I use the Biotene products. I think they’re great. Like I said, they’re just much more gentle. So, I will try this gel right now and see how it goes.
So, it has kind of a fruity taste and basically, I put a little on my tongue, kind of spread it all the way around along the cheeks and tongue. I think specifically, this is really good for using at night since it kind of coats the tissue, the cheeks, the tongue, the lips and things like that, and it helps to retain moisture so, when you’re sleeping, things are – your mouth is feeling more comfortable.
During night time is a common time when the mouth gets very dry and can actually wake people up because it’s so uncomfortable. So, I think this gel is – it’s a – it’s a great option and like I said, I think it best would be – you could use it any time of the day – but I think at night time would be a really great use for this – this product. And it is okay to swallow so, as long as you’re using the amounts the amounts prescribed, you’re okay there.
Xerostomia Relief Spray for dry mouth
So the last option here is called Xerostomia Relief Spray. Xerostomia is another word for dry mouth. And it comes in these little bottles here, and it was really easy to get through your dental office. You can fill out a form and they kind of send that to the company and it was really easy to get this and it’s kind of handy, has a little cap on it. And so, the directions for this is to shake gently and then two sprays in the mouth, three to four times a day. So, here we go.
I think it says you got to prime it a little. Here we go. Then once you spray it, you swish it around again just like the paste. So, I would say as far as taste goes, same kind of fruity, maybe a little more minty taste, and it’s less thick than the gel so if the thickness kind of bothered you. bothered you with the gel. I think the spray would be a good option. Again, for this spray, it recommends three to four times a day, really whenever, in those periods of time, if your mouth is feeling dry, it would be a really good option.
And once again, I am Dr. Jones at Southeast Family Dental and we can make you smile.