Question: My mouth is dry all the time. What can I do about it?

Answer: Dry mouth or xerostomia is a condition shared by many people. There are many reasons for dry mouth, but one of the most common is due to some prescription medications. There are over 400 medications which list dry mouth as a side effect. Some of the symptoms include

  • a sticky, dry feeling in your mouth

  • thick or stringy saliva

  • a burning sensation

  • sore tongue, lips (especially at the corners)

  • altered sense of taste

  • bad breath

  • increased plaque and decay

    Other factors which contribute to dry mouth are stress, radiation treatment to the head and neck area for cancer treatment, diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, AIDS, and Sjogren’s syndrome.

    Because dry mouth increases your chances of tooth decay and other problems, caring for your teeth and gums at home is vital. You should brush with a soft toothbrush twice a day, and floss every day to remove debris from between your teeth.

    Increasing fluid intake should help. Frequent sips of water or sucking on ice chips is a good way to get fluids. You may have a dentist or physician recommend over the counter saliva substitutes from the pharmacy. Prescriptions may need to be changed, or you may have a prescription for a medication that increases saliva production. Avoid tobacco, caffeine, and carbonated beverages. Sleeping with a humidifier may help.

    Regular checkups are imperative because dental decay and other problems can crop up quickly. If you have any questions please contact me at or visit our website at