Our bodies go through a lot of changes as we grow older. As time passes, our bodies stop recovering the way they used to, our hair turns gray and may start to thin out, wrinkles and spots appear and don’t go away, and we become more vulnerable to diseases and illnesses of all sorts.
However, dry #mouth is never a natural product of aging, and it can actually be fairly dangerous if it persists for too long. If your mouth dries out and stays that way for hours, days, or even longer, it’s not because you’re getting old, it’s because something’s happened. Causes of dry mouth include:
• Chronic dehydration
• Various diseases including diabetes, hypertension, and Sjögren’s syndrome
• Various drugs, including several used for chemotherapy
• Radiation treatments performed on the head or neck.
Saliva plays an important and active role in your digestion: it lubricates every part of your mouth so that you don’t get any sores from friction burns, it lubricates the food you eat as you chew it so that it’s easy to swallow, and enzymes in saliva begin the process of digestion and send signals down to your stomach which let it know to ramp up the stomach acid. Saliva also protects your mouth by washing out viruses and bacteria, and it can’t do any of these things if it isn’t present.
As such, it’s important to keep your mouth lubricated for as long as your lack of saliva persists.
• Sip from a bottle or a glass of water throughout the day to keep your mouth wet.
• Avoid breathing through your mouth so that what saliva is present won’t evaporate.
• Chew sugar-free gum to stimulate your saliva glands.
• Use a humidifier in your bedroom to keep things moist as you sleep.
• Try a #mouthwash or mouth rinse which can act as a saliva substitute or else keep your mouth damp for long periods.
People often overlook the health of their mouth, teeth, and gums so long as they’re working correctly, but they soon realize their mistake once they begin to have trouble eating and swallowing. The mouth is the gateway of all food, all nutrition, and unless it’s in good working order the rest of your body will start running out of resources to keep it going steady.