Dentures do not cause dry mouth. Dry mouth, also known as Xerostomia, is a condition that develops from a reduction of saliva secretion from the mouth. Saliva is an essential part of wearing dentures as it assists with creating suction between a denture plate and the tissue of the mouth. Saliva helps keep dentures held firmly in place.
However, when there is not enough saliva, it can be problematic. Not only do dentures slip and rub against gums, but bacterial growth and fungal infections increase. These may include such oral conditions as thrush, oral stomatitis, or angular cheilitis.
Factors That Can Lead To Dry Mouth With Dentures
There are many factors may lead to a dry mouth with dentures. These can include:
- Cancer treatment
- Medication use
- Mouth breathing
- Nerve damage
- Poor hygiene
- Unhealthy eating habits
The Symptoms of Dry Mouth
A dry mouth & dentures are a painful mixture. Individuals who suffer from the dry mouth with dentures have one or more of these symptoms.
- Bad breath
- Bleeding gums
- Cracking at mouth corners
- Decreased ability to taste food
- Difficulty speaking
- Difficulty swallowing
- Dry, raw feeling in the mouth
- Food sticking more often to the dentures
- Increased tooth decay
- Inflammation of mouth tissue
- Pebbled-looking tongue
- Red, parched mouth
- Sore throat
- Tongue that looks white from bacterial growth
How To Remedy Dentures and Dry Mouth
There are a few things you can do to treat dry mouth. Typically, these things would require the changing of some habits. For example, alcohol, tobacco, and caffeine can contribute to dryness in the mouth. To reduce the possibility of developing a dry mouth with dentures, reduce the amount of these things that you normally consume.
Drinking water throughout the day is another great way to combat dry mouth. It will also keep you hydrated. The benefit of drinking water throughout the day is that it will lubricate your dentures and the parts of your mouth that are in contact with them. This will reduce the rubbing of dry dentures on dry skin which leads to irritation.
Chewing on sugar-free gum or sucking on sugar-free candy or lozenges will also help beat dry mouth. These things will increase the production of saliva in your mouth. When you consider that dry mouth is a result of a lack of saliva, chewing sugar-free gum or sucking on sugar-free candy doesn’t sound like such a bad idea after all.
Possible Causes Of Dry Mouth
Dry mouth may be caused by certain medications. If this is the case, you will want to get together with your medical professional and discuss possible alternatives.
If medication changes do not seem to help the situation any, it is time to visit your dentist and review products that help with the situation. There are denture adhesives on the market that also moisturize gums along with creating a firm seal with dentures.
Another way you may be able to help the situation is how you care for your dentures each night. While you will not be able to rid the conditions of dry mouth with dentures completely, you may be able to make things a bit easier on yourself. When you go to bed each night, ensure that you soak your dentures in a cleaning solution. Cleaning and storing your dentures correctly will prevent them from drying out and causing problems.
You may decide that changing the type of dentures you wear can be a solution. Instead of denture plates, you may find that implant-secured dentures will be a better fit for you. These dentures are fixed to a few implant posts that are embedded into your jaw. The posts are permanent, but the dentures can be snapped in and out of place with ease. They can reduce dry mouth as the posts do all the work which can encourage saliva activity.
A dry mouth with dentures is not caused by the dentures themselves. It is caused by the conditions within the mouth. There are many ways to treat this condition to reduce the environment needed to dry out both the mouth and dentures. However, many of the remedies will require slight lifestyle changes to accommodate. These lifestyle changes are not difficult and when combined with drinking water throughout the day, the problem of dry mouth and dentures can be relieved.