Dry mouth and tongue is caused when the amount of saliva in the mouth decreases. It can be detrimental to oral health, hence, it is important that the damage is arrested well in time. This article discusses the possible causes and remedies for the same.
The medical term for dry mouth and tongue condition is known as xerostomia. Anyone and everyone can suffer from this once in a while, due to nervousness, when the person is upset, or is under stress. However, like it is believed, it is not a normal part of aging. If a person has this condition most of the time or all the time, then it can be an uncomfortable situation and can lead to serious health problems.
There are a number of factors which can cause the salivary glands to function improperly and produce less saliva than the required levels.
- Drugs and medications is one of the most common causes of dry mouth and tongue. There are a number of prescription as well as over-the-counter medications, which can cause this condition. The most common of them all are anti-histamines, decongestants, antidepressants, pain killers, and diuretics.
- High blood pressure medications, muscle relaxants, and medications prescribed for Parkinson’s disease can also cause dry mouth syndrome.
- Chemotherapy and radiation treatments closer to salivary glands in the head and neck region reduces saliva production, thereby causing this condition.
- Side effects of certain diseases can also lead to this syndrome. The diseases which can give rise to this problem are Sjogren’s syndrome, Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes, anemia, rheumatoid arthritis, Parkinson’s disease, mumps, hypertension, etc.
- Dry mouth and sore tongue can also be caused due to damage to a nerve in the head or the neck area, due to an injury or surgery.
- Dehydration is the most common cause of temporary dry mouth and tongue syndrome.
- Smoking and chewing tobacco has negative effects on saliva production and aggravates the condition.
- A very common problem which we often neglect is when we breathe with our mouth open. This can also be a significant cause of the condition.
- This condition can also be caused due to other factors such as menopause, nutritional deficiencies, and disorders of the mouth, such as oral thrush, etc.
Unfortunately, there is no proper relief treatment. Some palliative treatments can be of help to improve the symptoms, however, they are not able to treat the underlying condition.
- If the disorder is caused due to certain medications, then you can talk to your health care professional and get the drug causing the problem changed. Maybe reducing the drug can also be considered.
- When white tongue is caused by dehydration, consuming a sufficient quantity of water can prove to be helpful.
- Sucking sugar free candy or chewing sugar free gum can also prove to be useful while treating this syndrome.
- If you have the habit of breathing through your mouth, you may want to consider changing the habit and breathe through your nose as far as possible.
- You can use a room vaporizer to add moisture to the room before you go to bed. This can also help to solve the problem.
- There are also over-the-counter artificial saliva substitutes which can also be used to treat the problem.
- If you are not prone to cold, you can also consider sucking ice chips or cubes.
If these home remedies do not help in treating the condition, it is recommended you talk your health care professional about the same. Treating the underlying cause will help min curing the dry mouth and tongue condition.
Disclaimer: This article is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.