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Dry mouth: the facts

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Dry mouth: the facts

More than half of Americans suffer from dry mouth due to the use of some medications, autoimmune diseases, the treatment of cancer´s therapies and natural aging. Dry mouth is due to the lack of normal salivary flow. Dry mouth can affect people of any age and must be monitored so as not to cause more serious effects in the oral cavity.

What causes it?

Dry mouth can occur as a result of using drugs sold by prescription as antihistamines, anticonvulsants, antidepressants, cardiovascular drugs, antiemetics, antipsychotics, sedatives and decongestants, among others. Prolonged use of non-prescription medicines can also cause dry mouth. People who undergo surgery, radiation and chemotherapy may experience dry mouth. Radiation therapy, when applied to the head and neck, has more significant effects related to dry mouth, compared with surgery and chemotherapy. After radiation therapy applied in the head and neck, the irradiated salivary glands produce little or no saliva secretion and dry mouth can become a great discomfort for patients with oral cancer and pharynx.

Other examples from people susceptible to suffer with dry mouth are those suffering from autoimmune diseases such as Sjogren's syndrome , characterized by dry eyes , dry mouth and connective tissue disorders (rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus, systemic sclerosis , polymyositis, mixed or disease connective ) tissue. People with type I diabetes, multiple sclerosis, scleroderma, psoriasis and inflammatory bowel disease, cystic fibrosis may also have a dry mouth.

Dry mouth can also result from nutritional deficiencies such as lack of A vitamin and riboflavin (B2 vitamin).

Dry mouth symptoms

There are several symptoms present in the occurrence of dry mouth:

- Mouth and throat´s dryness
- Oral and pharyngeal infections increase.
- Growth of plaque
- Bad breath
- Mouth ulcers
- Taste´s modification
- Onset or progression of caries
- Development of gum disease and / or periodontal
- Difficulty in speech and swallowing


Dry mouth treatment

If your dry mouth is caused by prescription drugs, your doctor may reassess the type of medication that you are taking and eliminate or adjust the dosage of those who cause the problem. The artificial saliva sprays can be used to help moisten the mouth and increase saliva flow. Your doctor may also prescribe pilocarpine, a drug that helps stimulate saliva production. You can also decide to drink more water to quench the thirst due to dry mouth. Oral antiseptics in the form of mouthrinses are also suitable as anti -microbial plaque to control or assist in the treatment of oral infections.

Among the features that can be used at home to combat dry mouth are tooth brushing at least twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste , daily flossing , water intake or not sweetened liquids at meals and the use of mints or sugarless chewing gum to stimulate salivary flow . Try not to breathe through your mouth as this increase the effect of dry mouth.

See your doctor and dentist if you are suffering from this problem and monitor the medications that you take and what you eat or drink.

Source: Minha vida - http://www.minhavida.com.br