Treating Dry Mouth
By Hana Gadalla, BDS, MSc
Saliva is critical for the maintenance of good oral health and it is integral to successful communication and healthy nutrition. A lack in saliva’s quantity and quality, known as hyposalivation, can significantly alter quality of life. Oral health professionals can expect to encounter patients with xerostomia with increased frequency. Patients often subjectively feel they have dry mouth when clinically salivary flow seems normal, leading clinicians to underestimate the impact and severity of xerostomia. To help patients with xerostomia, clinicians should be proactive in asking patients if they have symptoms of dry mouth, especially if risk factors are present.