Dry or burning mouth

What Are the Symptoms of Dry Mouth?

  • A sticky, dry feeling in the mouth
  • Frequent thirst
  • Sores in the mouth, sores or split skin at the corners of the mouth, cracked lips
  • A dry feeling in the throat
  • A burning or tingling sensation in the mouth and especially on the tongue
  • A dry, red, raw tongue
  • Problems speaking or difficulty tasting, chewing, and swallowing
  • Hoarseness, dry nasal passages, sore throat
  • Bad breath
  • Difficulty wearing dentures

What saliva does

You might have a dry mouth if you are producing little or no saliva, and the little saliva you have can be thick and stringy. Saliva helps you taste what you eat and drink, and it helps you digest your food. It is also a natural mouth cleanser helping to flush food particles away from your teeth and neutralizing acids to help prevent tooth decay, mouth infections such as thrush and gum disease.

Dry mouth and dry skin

The lack of saliva can cause the skin in and around the mouth to become dry and tight. Your lips may become cracked, and sores might form at the corners of your mouth. Your tongue can feel rough and dry as well. And you might have trouble swallowing or difficulty speaking without the lubrication that saliva provides.

Also, dry mouth can cause unpleasant side effects. As the saliva isn’t flushing your mouth of food particles and debris regularly, it’s common to develop persistent bad breath. If you wear lipstick, you might find that it sticks to your teeth because no saliva is there to rinse it off. Dry mouth can also be the cause of a tickle in the throat.

Contact us if you have dry mouth

Contact us if you are suffering from the symptoms of dry mouth. Given that a chronically dry mouth raises the risk of having cavities, gum disease and infections such as thrush, it is good to check if you are taking one of the 400 types of medications that can cause dry mouth, including over-the-counter drugs for allergies and cold symptoms, and many prescription drugs for high blood pressure. Otherwise your symptoms might point to an underlying and undiagnosed medical condition like Sjögren’s syndrome or diabetes.