Have you ever considered that you may one day have dry mouth? Well as it turns out, 1 in 10 Americans take at least three prescription drugs per day, and dry mouth is among the most common side effects of medication. As a result, close to 50% of Americans aged 65 or older experience dry mouth. Even if this condition hasn’t affected you or your family personally, Dr. Byron Scott DMD, wants you to understand why dry mouth is a real health concern and what to do about it.
The all-important saliva in your mouth is produced by several different glands located beneath the mouth and within the jaw. Salivary glands are responsible for an astonishing 48 ounces of saliva per day. When your mouth waters right before that first bite of a juicy steak, it’s because all three types of these glands are working together in perfect harmony to aid in the first step of the digestion process. When one or more of these glands malfunction you may find yourself with an irritating case of xerostomia, (dry mouth) and the feeling of a healthy, normal mouth could disappear.
Why does it happen? The most common cause is prescription medication. Several hundred medications are capable of causing xerostomia, and they range from sleeping aids, to blood pressure stabilizers, to diet pills, antidepressants and more. That being said, there a number of other factors that may lead to dry mouth. If you find yourself with a sudden case of dry mouth and no new prescription to blame it on, consult your Mobile physician for help in tracking down the culprit.
Saliva is your friend. Its chemical components and beneficial bacteria make it possible for your body to turn food into fuel, and it is the first line of defense for your gums and teeth. Dr. Scott reminds us that dry mouth puts you in danger of tooth decay, gum disease, cavities, and tooth loss, not to mention horrendous breath. If that’s not enough, those problems can result in costly and painful situations down the road. We at Springhill Dental Health Center want you to keep all your teeth, so be wary of dry mouth!
Alright, now that you’ve heard the scary part, you can relax, because xerostomia is generally an easy fix. Follow these steps to get your mouth back in shape:
Dry mouth can be a serious problem, but it doesn’t have to be. Springhill Dental Health Center cares about our patients and we want you all to have happy, healthy mouths. Call us with any questions you might have and make sure to see Dr. Byron Scott for your regular check-ups!
My visit was incredible. I had my “All on Four” appliances cleaned, and it was a painless and thorough experience. Dr. Scott and all his staff are very friendly. During the cleaning, Mary was gentle and let me know everything she was doing and how it would feel. She gave me tips on how to clean my implants/appliances better and gave me a small brush to do the underside more effectively. Dr. Scott and Mary suggest cleanings take place every 3 months so I will be back in December.
Dr. Byron Scott is a highly-trained and accomplished dentist. He attended The University of Alabama School of Dentistry and subsequently completed numerous Advanced Studies and Trainings. Dr. Scott is Board-Certified by The Academy of General Dentistry and has earned Mastership status (MAGD), an honor shared by only 1% of dentists. He has numerous memberships and associations, including Diplomate status with The American Board of Oral Implantology (D-ABOI) and The International Congress of Oral Implantologists (D-ICOI). Overall, Dr. Scott has dedicated his life and career to helping patients improve their oral health through expert dentistry. His goal is to help each patient keep their smile healthy, attractive, and comfortable for the duration of their lifetime.