Excessive dry mouth can put you at increased risk for gum disease and tooth 5. Nerve damage. If you've suffered nerve damage after an injury or surgery, then. Dry mouth, or xerostomia (zeer-o-STOE-me-uh), refers to a condition in which the salivary glands in your mouth don't make enough saliva to. If you suffer from dry mouth, you should know that you are not alone. One out of every five people suffer from dry mouth or inadequate saliva.
in 5. Mouth Dryness the
Chemotherapy can alter the nature of the saliva, as well as how much of it the body produces. This can result in nerve damage to the head and neck area can result in dry mouth.
Either chewing or smoking tobacco increases the risk of dry mouth symptoms. Exercising or playing in the heat: The salivary glands may become dry as bodily fluids are concentrated elsewhere in the body. Dry mouth symptoms are more likely if the exercise or playing continues for a long time.
Signs and symptoms of dry mouth may include:. Alcohol consumption should be kept to a minimum or avoided altogether, and caffeine should be only be consumed in moderation. Treatment for dry mouth depends on several factors such as whether the patient has an underlying condition or disease, or is taking certain medications that may be causing dry mouth.
If the dry mouth is thought to be caused by a particular medication, the doctor will either alter the dosage or prescribe another drug which is less likely to cause dry mouth.
Medication may be prescribed to stimulate the production of saliva, such as pilocarpine Salagen or cevimeline Evoxac. This includes plaque removal and treatment of gingival infections, inflammation, and dental caries. Brushing teeth and flossing regularly is important. The doctor or dentist will probably examine the patient's mouth and review their medical history. Blood tests and imaging scans of the salivary glands may also be ordered. This is a simple procedure that measures the flow rate of saliva.
Collection devices are placed over duct orifices of the saliva glands, and saliva production is stimulated with citric acid. This is a radiographic examination of the salivary glands and ducts. It may be useful in identifying salivary gland stones and masses. A small sample of salivary gland tissue is taken. If malignancy cancer is suspected, the doctor may also order a biopsy. Many doctors report that often, even though the patient complains of severe dry mouth, the oral mucosa appears to be moist.
Less frequently, it may be the other way round - the oral mucosa appears dry, but the individual does not complain of dry mouth symptoms. Experts say that xerostomia is usually caused by inadequate function of the salivary glands.
Xerostomia is a common problem. It is a frequent side effect of medication, which may improve with a new prescription or an adjustment of dosage. We all get a dry mouth sometimes - when we are upset, under stress , or extremely frightened. Xerostomia is different - the individual's mouth is dry most of the time. Some patients may think dry mouth is a normal part of aging, but it is not. It is, however, more commonly found in older adults.
Experts say the main reason is that elderly people take more medications compared with the rest of the population, and some of these medications cause xerostomia. A systemic disease is one that affects the entire body. Article last updated by Adam Felman on Tue 2 January All references are available in the References tab.
Do you have dry mouth? Hyposalivation in elderly patients. Mouth and teeth after head and neck radiotherapy. Diagnosis and management of xerostomia and hyposalivation. Journal of Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management.
MNT is the registered trade mark of Healthline Media. Any medical information published on this website is not intended as a substitute for informed medical advice and you should not take any action before consulting with a healthcare professional. Privacy Terms Ad policy Careers. This page was printed from: Get the most out of Medical News Today. Subscribe to our Newsletter to recieve: Professionally-verified articles Daily or weekly updates Content custom-tailored to your needs Create an account.
Xerostomia is the subjective sensation of dry mouth, which is often but not always associated with hypofunction of the salivary glands. Hyposalivation is a clinical diagnosis that is made based on the history and examination,  but reduced salivary flow rates have been given objective definitions.
A stimulated saliva flow rate less than 0. However, sometimes the clinical findings do not correlate with the symptoms experienced.
Conversely a person who reports experiencing xerostomia may not show signs of reduced salivary secretions subjective xerostomia. The differential of hyposalivation significantly overlaps with that of xerostomia. Salivary flow rate is decreased during sleep, which may lead to a transient sensation of dry mouth upon waking.
This disappears with eating or drinking or with oral hygiene. When associated with halitosis, this is sometimes termed "morning breath". Dry mouth is also a common sensation during periods of anxiety, probably owing to enhanced sympathetic drive.
Physiologic age-related changes in salivary gland tissues may lead to a modest reduction in salivary output and partially explain the increased prevalence of xerostomia in older people. Aside from physiologic causes of xerostomia, iatrogenic effects of medications are the most common cause. Xerostomia may be caused by autoimmune conditions which damage saliva-producing cells. Xerostomia may be the only symptom of celiac disease, especially in adults, who often have no obvious digestive symptoms.
Radiation therapy for cancers of the head and neck including brachytherapy for thyroid cancers where the salivary glands are close to or within the field irradiated is another major cause of xerostomia. Radiotherapy for oral cancers usually involves up to 70 Gy of radiation, often given alongside with chemotherapy which may also have a damaging effect on saliva production.
Sicca syndrome is not a specific condition, and there are varying definitions, but the term can describe oral and eye dryness that is not caused by autoimmune diseases e. Oral dryness may also be caused by mouth breathing,  usually caused by partial obstruction of the upper respiratory tract. Examples include hemorrhage , vomiting , diarrhea , and fever. Alcohol may be involved in the cause of salivary gland disease, liver disease, or dehydration.
Smoking is another possible cause. Hormonal disorders, such as poorly controlled diabetes, chronic graft versus host disease or low fluid intake in people undergoing haemodialysis for renal impairment may also result in xerostomia, due to dehydration. Xerostomia may be a consequence of infection with hepatitis C virus HCV and a rare cause of salivary gland dysfunction may be sarcoidosis.
A diagnosis of hyposalivation is based predominantly on the clinical signs and symptoms. This test is simple and noninvasive, and involves measurement of all the saliva a patient can produce during a certain time, achieved by dribbling into a container. Sialometery can yield measures of stimulated salivary flow or unstimulated salivary flow. Unstimulated whole saliva flow rate more closely correlates with symptoms of xerostomia than stimulated salivary flow rate.
Salivary scintiscanning using technetium is rarely used. The successful treatment of xerostomia is difficult to achieve and often unsatisfactory. Where the symptom is caused by hyposalivation secondary to underlying chronic disease, xerostomia can be considered permanent or even progressive.
Saliva substitutes can improve xerostomia, but tend not to improve the other problems associated with salivary gland dysfunction. But, it is less clear whether or not this effect is sustained to 12 months postradiotherapy. A review looking at non-pharmacological interventions reported a lack of evidence to support the effects of electrostimulation devices, or acupuncture, on symptoms of dry mouth.
Xerostomia is a very common symptom. Xerostomia has been used as a test to detect lies, which relied on emotional inhibition of salivary secretions to indicate possible incrimination.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Xerostomia Synonyms Dry mouth,  dry mouth syndrome  Xerostomia , also known as dry mouth ,  is dryness in the mouth , which may be associated with a change in the composition of saliva , or reduced salivary flow, or have no identifiable cause.
Treatment for dry mouth depends on what is causing the problem. Learn more from WebMD about different approaches to stimulating the. A dry mouth occurs when a person does not produce enough saliva. It can lead to speech and eating difficulties, halitosis, dental cavities, and. The causes of dry mouth can range from something minor, like dehydration, 5. You're dehydrated. "The most common cause of dry mouth is.