What is Dry Mouth?

Dry mouth, also called xerostomia, is a common concern that affects roughly 1 in 5 adults. 

Dryness occurs when your body doesn’t produce enough saliva. It is most common in those who take multiple medications, but can also be caused by various diseases and medical treatments.

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1 in 0
Australians suffer from dry mouth.

Common Causes of Dry Mouth

Medications

Up to 600 medications are known to cause dryness of the mouth & throat

For example drugs used to treat depression, high blood pressure and anxiety, some antihistamines, decongestants, muscle relaxants and pain medications

Cancer Therapies

Chemotherapy drugs can change the nature of saliva and the amount produced while some radiation treatments can damage salivary glands

Tobacco and Alcohol

Drinking alcohol, smoking or chewing tobacco can increase dry mouth symptoms, not only immediately after use but also throughout the day

Nerve Damage

An injury or surgery that causes nerve damage to the head and neck area can result in dry mouth

Age

Saliva production can reduce as you grow older

Dehydration

80% of Australians are dehydrated every single day and may not be aware of it

Sleep Apnea and Snoring

Snoring and breathing with your mouth open also can contribute to dry mouth

Health Conditions

Dry mouth can be caused by health conditions such as diabetes, stroke, yeast infection (thrush) in your mouth or Alzheimer’s disease

Similarly autoimmune diseases, including Sjogren’s syndrome or HIV/AIDS are also known to cause dry mouth

Dysphagia

Difficulty speaking, chewing, and swallowing where there is not enough saliva to keep the mouth moist

 

Common Signs of Dry Mouth

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Many people may be suffering from xerostomia and are completely unaware of the issue, the causes or even the signs. However leaving your mouth absent of sufficient saliva can cause additional side effects and can be detrimental to your health. Common signs include: