FACT SHEET: DRY MOUTH - Providence Medical
What Causes Dry Mouth?

  • Some Medications including antihistamines and anti-depressants
  • Some medical conditions including Sjögren’s Syndrome and diabetes
  • Cancer and Cancer Treatment
  • Increasing age

What are the symptoms of dry mouth?

For sufferers with a mild condition, it may be hard to detect dry mouth.
In fact, most sufferers don’t notice they have dry mouth until their saliva flow has dropped by 50%.

The symptoms of dry mouth can include:

  • A sore mouth
  • Overall stickiness to the touch
  • Cracking at the corners of the mouth
  • Dry, cracked and painful lips
  • A red, parched or pebbled look on the tongue
  • Difficulty eating spicy or dry foods
  • Food not tasting the way it used to
  • Difficulty speaking
  • A tendency to wake up more often during the night
  • Bad breath
  • Discomfort wearing dentures
  • Feeling thirsty, especially at night

Self-Care Suggestions for Dry Mouth Syndrome

Be guided by your doctor and dentist, but general self-care suggestions include:

  • Brush and floss your teeth at least twice daily.
  • Regularly use fluoride-containing products. Ask your dentist about which ones are best.
  • Treat dry lips with Vaseline or some other type of greasy balm, such as lanolin. An air humidifier used in your bedroom at night may help.
  • Ask your Dentist for more information if you wear dentures – adhesive dental products may be recommended.
  • Take out partial or full dentures while you sleep.
  • Ask your Dentist for advice on toothpaste suitable for dry mouth syndrome.
  • Visit your Dentist regularly for check-ups, and treatment if necessary.