By: Guest Author
Published: May 11, 2021
Written by Dr. Any Isaac, DMD -Guest Contributor
A woman goes through a lot of hormonal changes all through her life. There is a shift in hormones while crossing puberty, giving birth, and going through menopause. Your dental health is quite sensitive to the hormonal ups and downs in your body. If you suffer from pre-menopause dry mouth or menopause dry mouth, you don’t need to worry.
Many women face this issue around menopause. Let us understand the connection between menopause and dry mouth and how to cope with this condition.
What is Dry Mouth?
The saliva of your mouth keeps it moist and hydrated. But when your salivary glands produce less saliva, it is called dry mouth. The insufficient saliva makes your mouth feel parched and uncomfortable. You can have problems in regular activities like speaking, eating, and swallowing. A dry mouth can be a breeding ground for tooth decay or bacterial infection.
Why Does Menopause Causes Dry mouth?
Menopause and dental health are closely connected through hormones. There are 2 essential hormones in a female body – Progesterone and Estrogen. The level of both these hormones drops when a woman hits menopause. This hampers the moisture generation in mucous membranes and raises salivary cortisol. As a result, you can suffer from dry eyes, menopause dry mouth, and burning sensation in the mouth.
Sometimes the effects of the dropping of hormones start before the beginning of menopause. That is known as pre-menopause dry mouth.
What Are the Other Causes of Dry Mouth?
Apart from menopause dry mouth; there can be other reasons for dry mouth. You might be having a dry mouth as a side effect of any autoimmune disease like arthritis, lupus, and diabetes. It can also be a side effect of certain cancer medications.
How to Manage Menopause and Mouth Issues? What Are the Home Remedies for Dry Mouth?
Chew & Suck Foods That help Produce Saliva
You can chew sugar-free gum, hard-boiled sweets, and ginger. Sucking ice cubes and ice lollies will also generate saliva in your mouth. But don’t overdo eating these food items.
Avoid Eating Foods That Dry Out Your Mouth
Spicy, salty, and acidic food can aggravate the dryness of your mouth. So avoid eating these types of food. Dry bread, biscuits, and crackers are also not suitable for people with dry mouth.
Keep Yourself Hydrated
It is vital to remain hydrated to combat menopause dry mouth. But don’t fall for sugary syrups. Instead, drink lots of water, sugar-free and healthy drinks like juices and de-tox water throughout your day.
Get Rid of Caffeine, Alcohol, & Smoking Addiction
Alcohol and caffeine dehydrate and irritate your mouth. Smoking also contributes to drying out of your mouth. It is advisable to avoid caffeine, alcohol & smoking which can lead to dry mouth.
Take Care of Your Teeth & Gums
It is challenging to manage menopause and dental health issues together. The least you can do is maintain healthy gums and teeth. Use a toothbrush, toothpaste, and mouthwash that are gently designed for dry mouth.
Use Over the Counter Saliva Substitutes
There are various saliva substitutes available in pharmacies these days. They come as gels, tablets, and sprays. They can temporarily provide you relief from bad breath and cottonmouth effects of menopause dry mouth.
Apply Natural & Gentle Lip Balm
Menopause and dry mouth combined can instigate dry lips as well. A gentle lip balm with soothing and natural ingredients will help you with chipped and flaky lips. Apply it multiple times in a day.
Rinse Your Mouth 4-5 Times in a Day
Make a solution of 2 teaspoons baking soda and 8 ounces of water. Rinse your mouth at least 4-5 times with this solution in a day. It will control the bacteria formation in your mouth.
Maintain Good Oral Hygiene
Brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing helps to prevent any infection due to cavities and bacteria. Regular oral hygiene becomes more vital if you are going through menopause dry mouth.
It is always advisable to visit your dentist. Your dentist can tell you if there is a connection between menopause and dental health in your case. Or other underlying health causes of dry mouth are troubling you. They will prescribe the medicine accordingly.
Dr. Anu Isaac, DMD, runs a successful dental practice in Salem, MA. Dr. Isaac strives for quality on a daily basis and this commitment to quality is reflected in her constant pursuit of advanced training. Her firm belief that even experts need to stay updated about what’s new in the dental field, enables her to provide every patient with optimal oral care. As the founder of Coral Dental Care, she is dedicated to creating healthy, beautiful smiles for her patients and also to educating dental and non-dental communities with her engaging articles on all things related to oral health, recent dental innovations, and latest treatment modalities.
The views expressed herein this article, written by a guest contributor, do not necessarily represent those of the Red Hot Mamas organization. The content is for informational purposes and should not substitute the advice of your doctor.