AN EXPERT revealed why you shouldn’t ignore that dry mouth feeling, as it could be a sign of something serious.
The leading dentist Dr. Azad Eyrumlu said some health problems can present as dry mouth, sore throat, difficulty chewing or swallowing, or bad breath.
Xerostomia is the medical term for dry mouth.
dr Eyrumlu, from private dental firm Banning Dental Group, which has five clinics in the south-east, said: “Our bodies are incredibly complex and different parts are closely linked, although we may not always be aware of it.
“Sometimes poor oral health can lead to serious problems in other parts of the body.
“The opposite is true in the sense that a dry mouth can be a sign that something is wrong elsewhere.
“This can manifest itself in symptoms such as a sticky feeling in the mouth, a dry or sore throat, difficulty chewing or swallowing, or even bad breath.”
dr Eyrumlu said these symptoms could signal:
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Autoimmune diseases like HIV
- Or Sjögren’s syndrome
The main causes of dry mouth are dehydration, medication, mouth breathing at night and anxiety, according to the NHS.
So if you think your mouth is drier than usual, you can often treat it yourself.
It’s also more common with age.
But conditions like diabetes — which also have symptoms like increased urination, blurred vision and weight loss — need to be treated as soon as possible.
And a stroke is a medical emergency because it can be fatal.
A person who has a stroke may experience numbness or weakness in their limbs, feel confused, have trouble speaking or seeing clearly, and have a headache.
All of these conditions can cause the salivary glands to stop producing enough saliva, leading to xerostomia.
Not only can this be uncomfortable, it can also lead to complications in the mouth.
Saliva contains important enzymes that aid in digestion and help the body absorb vitamins and nutrients from food.
It also helps neutralize acids produced by bacteria and wash away food particles—key to preventing tooth decay.
People with dry mouth are therefore at higher risk for tooth decay, gum disease, mouth sores, poor diet and cleft corners of the mouth.
dr Eyrumlu said: “When you visit a dentist, we don’t just look at your oral health.
“We are also trained to recognize certain broader issues with your overall health.
“It’s important to keep a close eye on your own health and if you notice persistent dry mouth symptoms, you need to discuss this with your GP.”
It is recommended to visit a dentist every six months to ensure that your oral hygiene is in good working order and to keep an eye on any developing problems.
When to see a GP for dry mouth
The NHS says see your GP if:
- Your mouth is still dry after trying home or pharmacy treatments (such as gels, sprays or lozenges) for a few weeks
- You have difficulty chewing, swallowing, or speaking
- You have trouble eating regularly
- You have problems with your sense of taste that won’t go away
- Your mouth is sore, red, swollen, or bleeding
- You have sore white patches in your mouth
- You think a prescribed medication might be causing your dry mouth
- you have other symptoms, such as B. excessive urination or dry eyes
https://www.thesun.ie/health/8771814/why-dry-mouth-could-be-sign-something-serious/ I’m an expert, so dry mouth could be a sign of something serious