Hawaii Pacific Dental Group, Inc.

How Dry Mouth Can Lead to Serious Dental Damage

By Dr. Rohinton J. Patel on November 27, 2016

A patient with her dentistPatients at our practice know that we have numerous treatments to improve the health and appearance of their smiles. When addressing serious issues impacting the teeth, gums, and jaw joint, we can use advanced restorative dentistry procedures to improve wellness and help patients smile with confidence.

What many people don't realize is that seemingly small problems may actually be bigger than they think. Take dry mouth, for example. As you're about to read, dry mouth is linked to many significant dental health concerns.

About Dry Mouth

Dry mouth refers to instances in which there is insufficient saliva present in the mouth. This can occur for a number of reasons. Our primary concern is when the dry mouth is persistent and chronic rather than the occasional and situational cases of dry mouth.

What Causes Dry Mouth?

Some of the most common causes of dry mouth include the following:

  • Anxiousness/nervousness
  • Blocked salivary glands
  • Advanced age
  • Side effect from prescription drugs
  • Side effects of illegal drugs/narcotics
  • Various medical conditions
  • Use of tobacco products
  • Nerve damage

Combinations of these different causes are not uncommon.

Regular Dry Mouth Could Cause Major Issues

If you experience dry mouth every now and then, chances are you are simply experiencing what many people do. However, recurring dry mouth may be the sign of many problems. Early on, the dry mouth can result in difficulty speaking, chewing, and swallowing, as well as serious bad breath. Yet there are other dangers to consider with regard to dry mouth.

Lack of Saliva Can Weaken Your Teeth

Many people don't realize this, but saliva is crucial for keeping your teeth healthy. Saliva actually helps with the remineralization of teeth, keeping the enamel and overall structure sturdy. Without saliva, your teeth can weaken. This means greater risk of tooth decay, dental erosion, chips, cracks, and fractures.

Dry Mouth Exacerbates Gum Disease

In addition to affecting your teeth, dry mouth can also result in serious health risks to your gums. The bacteria that naturally resides in the mouth thrives in these sorts of conditions, which means that periodontal disease and other problems that affect your gums may be exacerbated.

Dry Mouth May Be a Sign of a Major Health Problem

In a number of cases, dry mouth and dental pain are early symptoms of serious health conditions that can affect your mouth. For instance, many cases of oral cancer can cause pain around the tongue or jaw as well as persistent dry mouth. This is why it's important to mention these kinds of problems to your doctor or dentist if they arise.

Discuss Dry Mouth with Our Team

There's no need to wait for regular dental checkups to voice your concerns and discuss your dental wellness issues. If you suffer from chronic dry mouth and would like to have it professionally addressed, we'd be more than happy to oblige. After diagnosing the problem, we can initiate treatment to help restore wellness to your smile and your overall health.

Learn More About Treating and Preventing Dry Mouth

For more information about treating dry mouth and how it can be prevented, be sure to contact our advanced dental care treatment center today. During your visit, we will be more than happy to address any dental health concerns that you may have.

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