Not much saliva present in your mouth; is this a concern? Yes, a dry mouth means you have an inadequate flow of saliva. This condition is called xerostomia. It can be a symptom of many medical disorders and is a side effect of many medications.
Saliva is very important in the mouth as it provides a defense against tooth decay and gum disease. Your secretions naturally rinse your teeth and dilute the acids from things we eat and drink. Your saliva helps prevent the plaque from sticking to your tooth’s surface, carries antimicrobial agents to kill the “bad” bacteria in your mouth, and carries the minerals that can help rebuild your tooth’s enamel. Saliva also helps break down and move our food to the back of our mouth in preparation for swallowing.
Some signs of dry mouth are increased decay on smooth surfaces, heavy plaque and stain accumulation, constant sore throat, hoarseness, and difficulty swallowing.
Saliva maintains the health of soft and hard tissues in your mouth. Using sugar-free gum and candy can help relieve your dry mouth. The sugar-free gum and candies help stimulate and increase your saliva flow. There are also a variety of oral rinses on the market. Examples of over-the-counter products include Salivea rinse, ACT Dry Mouth rinse, spray, toothpaste or lozenges.