DRY MOUTH—PART III
How often should I visit my dentist if I have dry mouth?
You have a higher risk of tooth decay and gum disease with dry mouth, and these can get worse more quickly than usual. So it is important to visit your dental team regularly. Your dental team will tell you how often you should visit.
What can I do to help relieve the symptoms of dry mouth?
There are different ways of relieving the symptoms of dry mouth. Some people find that sipping water, or sucking sugar-free sweets, helps in the short term. It is very important to use sugar-free products, as dry mouth can make you more susceptible to tooth decay. Chewing sugar-free gum can also help as it encourages your mouth to make saliva. Your dental team might recommend products such as rinses, gels, pastes and lozenges which you can get from the pharmacist.
What toothpaste should I use?
It is important to use an ADA endorsed fluoride toothpaste. There are stronger fluoridated toothpastes that a dentist can prescribe for you too. Fluoride helps prevent decay of tooth enamel. If you have receded gums, then the roots of your teeth are exposed. Roots of teeth don’t have enamel, so those people benefit more from a product that has calcium phosphate. Ask your dentist which products would be best for you.
What can my dental team do to help prevent the problems caused by dry mouth?
Your dental team won’t be able to help with the cause of dry mouth. But by helping you keep your mouth clean and by using fluoride they can, in many cases, help to delay the start of tooth decay. Your dental team will be able to give you advice about your diet and tell you how to care for your teeth and gums properly.
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