Although some people experience excess salivation with dentures, some people have the opposite problem: dry mouth called xerostomia. Dry mouth can be bad for denture wearers because it can make dentures chafe more. This makes your dentures uncomfortable to wear and can lead to persistent sores. It can also lead to infections because saliva is your body’s antibacterial agent.
Here are some tips for managing your dry mouth so you can wear your dentures comfortably.
The first step to managing dry mouth is figuring out what is causing it. There are many common causes of dry mouth, including:
Radiation therapy can cause your salivary glands to produce less saliva, as can some illnesses such as Sjögren’s syndrome. Poorly fitting dentures can lead to dry mouth by either blocking saliva production or by causing you to hold your mouth partly open.
If you’ve tried drinking more fluids and your dry mouth is persistent, it’s best to start by checking medications to see if they might be causing your dry mouth. If they are, you can adjust the medication, try using a saliva substitute, or what is known as a sialagogue–a substance that stimulates saliva production.
Sialagogues can be something as simple as a hard candy, preferably sugar-free, or it can be a prescription medication. Which is right for you depends on your preferences and your doctor’s recommendations. There are also commercial saliva substitutes that are designed to perform the same function as saliva, and some people report they work better than just water for lubricating your dentures and mouth.
Finally, if dentures are the problem, you should have them refitted or replaced.
If you think new dentures will help your dry mouth, please call (610) 272-0828 for an appointment with a Philadelphia denture dentist at Dental Excellence of Blue Bell.
Dental Excellence of Blue Bell