What can I do about a dry mouth?

Begin with a visit to your dentist to determine the cause of your dry mouth. Depending on the diagnosis, your dentist may tell you to

  • Stop smoking
  • Drink more water each day
  • Breathe through your nose instead of your mouth
  • Avoid oral rinses and mouthwashes that contain alcohol
  • Consume less caffeine
  • Take a look at your medications and supplements and, with your health team’s guidance, try substitutes known to have no “dry mouth” side effects
  • If you take a combination decongestant/antihistamine for colds or seasonal allergies, try a single purpose medication instead
  • Suck on sugar-free candy but be aware of possible laxative side effects
  • Use a humidifier in your bedroom or your office
  • Drive with the windows and the top up in your car OR wearing a helmet when on your motorcycle

If you have specifically been diagnosed with xerostomia, the medical term for dry mouth, you should

  • Ask us for recommendations based on your concerns and preferences—you need saliva to inhibit bacteria growth in your mouth, which prevents cavities, and saliva also aids swallowing, digestion, tasting, and talking
  • Use an oral rinse formulated for dry mouth
  • Try a saliva substitute
  • Consider fluoride treatment to protect your teeth from cavities
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