Have you ever heard about the cottonmouth? It’s also called dry mouth or xerostomia. It is the condition in which human body doesn’t produce enough amount of saliva. This condition can be temporary as well as long-term. When it is a temporary situation, it is usually caused by excitement or nervousness. Being an ongoing issue, it would be usually there due to certain medical conditions.
According to American Dental Association, a normal human being produces 1.5 liters of saliva in a day. The development of cottonmouth is concerned with the inhibition of saliva production due to deficient working of salivary glands. It is worth mentioning here that saliva has important role in digestion and prevention of several oral and dental health issues. Moreover, saliva helps in proper balancing of pH level of the mouth.
It’s also worth mentioning here that not all cases of dry mouth are the same. Cottonmouth is mainly associated with the dry and sticky sensation in the mouth. It may give you the feeling like you have wads of cotton stuffed in your mouth. Other symptoms of cottonmouth include burning sensation in the throat, cracked lips, and difficulty in speaking, swallowing and chewing.
Common reasons for cottonmouth
The reasons for cottonmouth can be various. Some of them are mentioned as under.
- First to talk is the medication you take regularly. About 500 medications can result in dry mouth. If you and your doctor think that dryness in your mouth is occurring due to medication, you both can discuss about it in order to find better alternate.
- Another reason for dry mouth can be the existence of medical conditions. Although there are many other health conditions which can result in dry mouth, the most common one is Sjogren's disease. This disease basically attacks on salivary glands to put them out of action.
- Cancer treatment can also result in dry mouth, especially is the area around neck and head are being treated. In this scenario, laser therapy can result in loss of functionality in salivary glands. Another stage of cancer treatment is chemotherapy which also results in cottonmouth.
- Bad lifestyle habits can also result in dry mouth. For instance, your mouth can run out of saliva if you consume alcohol, smoke, or use drugs.
Since cottonmouth can be more than just irritating, it needs to be treated on high priority. The treatment mainly includes change in medication or treatment of root issues which would result in cottonmouth. You can talk to your dentist about the issue in order to find out suitable treatment.