Have you ever experienced the discomfort of a dry or sticky sensation in your mouth? This condition is called dry mouth and may feel unpleasant. But it could also heighten your risk of forming severe dental problems that may leave you with irreversible damage to your smile.
Preventing dry mouth can preserve the health of your teeth and gums. It will also keep your mouth feeling fresh and clean. Dr. Nishan Halim, a dentist serving patients in Washington, DC, offers advice for patients to avoid developing dry mouth.
Drink Plenty of Water
Dry mouth often occurs when you are dehydrated. Drinking water can keep your body healthy and prevent your mouth from becoming dried out.
Dry conditions in your mouth may allow bacteria to spread more freely across your teeth to reach your gums. This increases your risk of contracting an infection in the gum tissue called periodontal disease.
If periodontal disease persists, it can reach the jawbone and tooth root, damaging the structure permanently which may result in tooth loss. Therefore, you should avoid this dental harm by keeping your mouth clean and healthy.
Drinking water has the added bonus of rinsing lingering residues from your teeth, boosting your oral hygiene. This will, in turn, reduce the likelihood of forming bad breath and other unpleasant oral issues. Dentists and medical professionals agree that to stay hydrated you should drink at least eight eight-ounce glasses of water each day.
Encourage Saliva Production
Dry mouth usually develops due to a decrease in saliva production. You can encourage the production of saliva by stimulating the glands through the act of chewing. But you should be careful about which foods you choose for this act.
Consuming foods with added sugar can make your mouth acidic, which may erode the enamel of your teeth, leaving your smile vulnerable to decay. Sugar-free gum is an effective option for generating saliva if your mouth feels dry. It will not compromise your oral health because the absence of sugar will not create a risk of cavity formation.
Address Environmental Contributors
When you notice dry mouth symptoms, you should take note of your environment to see if it correlates with your condition. If you do notice a pattern, you should take action and upgrade your space to prevent dry mouth development.
For instance, dry air in a room, especially as you sleep, can leave your mouth unpleasantly dry as well. Using a humidifier in this space will add moisture to the air and can reduce your symptoms while protecting your oral health.
Find Optimal Preventative Care from Your Washington, DC Dentist
Dr. Halim is a highly skilled dentist offering both preventative and emergency dental care to patients in Washington, DC. Patients of any age can also find general, cosmetic, and restorative dentistry, including periodontal care, at our practice. We can also assist patients using advanced laser dental treatments. To schedule a consultation with us, contact our office online or reach a member of our staff by phone at 202.318.4113.