Dry mouth will affect almost all of us somewhere during our lifetime. Over the counter products like Biotene, Alcohol Free Listerine and sugar free gums have become quite popular and easy to find. Unfortunately, those treatments for dry mouth only address the symptoms. There are two prescription products available from your medical and dental offices that will do much more than make your mouth feel moist temporarily.
Fast Facts About Dry Mouth
- Also known as Xerostomia
- Dry mouth can cause difficulties in tasting, chewing, talking and swallowing
- Low saliva flow can put you at risk for more decay and gum disease
- Not having enough spit can make things taste strange
- Hundreds of medications cause dry mouth (more than 400!)
- An increase in age also increases your chances of having a dry mouth
- Autoimmune diseases like Sjogren disease, arthritis and lupus are linked to dry mouth
- Alcohol, caffeine, smoking, and some spicy foods can make things worst
- Radiation and chemotherapy usually cause low salivary flow
Basically when you don’t have enough spit in your mouth, your teeth are more susceptible to decay. Your saliva provides all kinds of nice minerals like sodium, potassium, calcium and phosphate as well as protective enzymes. When life hands you a situation that causes dry mouth, it’s important to find a product that will not only make your mouth feel more comfortable, but one that will also help replace the minerals that you are lacking.
There are two prescription rinses that you may not have heard of:
Both NeutraSal and SalivaMAX use ingredients that provide relief from discomfort as well as protect the teeth from the damage that plaque and food/drinks can cause over time. Your lips, cheeks and tongue will also feel much better when you use a product like this. They are both a powder that you simply add to water and stir. The solution should be swished for one minute and spit down the drain. Either brand can be used 2-10 times per day as symptoms persist. The rinses tastes just like a mild salt water with no strange aftertaste!
How do you pick one? Talk to your doctor and check your insurance plan to see if one or both are covered. Each company does offer an assistance program and the products can be shipped directly to your home. Keep in mind that it usually take one or two weeks of consistent use before someone really starts to notice the effects, so you will need to be patient.
How many of you suffer from dry mouth?
What do you think is causing it and what have you tried so far?