Sometimes our mouth becomes dry which makes us feel uncomfortable, and we rush to the water cooler to quench our thirst. This is quite normal.

But, sometimes one may have an unusually dry mouth for a longer period, which may not be due to thirst. This is a medical condition called xerostomia, or commonly known as dry mouth.This is also known as the cotton mouth.

Discover how can you get rod of dry mouth by using simple home remedies.

You might think that your mouth is becoming dry due to blabbering too much or singing or laughing loudly with your friends. Well, why would your mouth have a problem with how much you talk in a day?

The major reason behind this condition is the lowered rate of production of saliva in the mouth or due to any change in its composition. This indicates that the salivary glands are not working properly.

What is Saliva?

Saliva is the watery secretion of the salivary glands which are present in the mouth. It is composed of 99.5% of water.

Saliva performs various jobs for the body like talking, spitting and most importantly chewing the food. It acts as an antimicrobial agent and protects the teeth, gums, and the taste buds from decay or infections.

It acts as a soldier against plaque and cavities. If you have a healthy mouth, thank the saliva for it!

Dry mouth is regarded as a symptom for the salivary glands not functioning well.  It can be very irritating for the person suffering from this condition. The mouth becomes sticky, and it is also known as the cotton mouth.

It is linked with dehydration, depression, stress, aging, anxiety, snoring, and smoking or consuming alcohol. Due to hormonal changes, pregnancy can also cause dry mouth, but that is pretty normal.

Causes of dry mouth:

1.Dehydration:

This can be caused due to profuse sweating, burns, fever, vomiting or the loss of blood.

2.A Side Effect of Medicines:

Sedatives or painkillers can cause a dry mouth. Medications used for treating anxiety, stress, asthma, depression, acne, allergies, diarrhea, epilepsy and psychotic disorders usually lead to this condition.

3.A Side Effect of Diseases:

HIV/AIDS, diabetes, hypertension, Alzheimer’s disease, stroke, arthritis, and mumps can also play a role in causing a person to have a dry mouth.

4.A Side Effect of Treatments:

Chemotherapy or radiation can damage the salivary glands which might give rise to dry mouth.

5.Removal of Salivary Glands by Surgery.

6.Damage to the Brain, Spinal Cord, or the Nerves.

7.Consumption of Alcohol, Smoking or Chewing Tobacco.

Symptoms of Dry Mouth:

  1. Sticky and dry feeling in the mouth
  2. Persistent thirst
  3. Foul breath
  4. Cracked lips and sore mouth
  5. Burning sensation usually on the tongue
  6. Tongue becomes raw and dry
  7. Trouble while chewing and speaking
  8. A sore throat along with a trouble while swallowing

The dry mouth does not help you maintain your oral health. A good and healthy mouth is a must and has its benefits. You certainly don’t want your friends running away from you.

Sometimes, even glugging down a big and tall glass of water doesn’t help.  So there are certain remedies which can help you get rid of dry mouth, and guess what, you don’t even have to visit several doctors or pharmacies.

Top 16 Remedies for a Dry Mouth:

1.Sugar:

Well, all of us crave for sweet things, isn’t it?

So sucking on sugar-free peppermints or chewing sugar-free gums can certainly help you. This helps in restoring the electrolytes lost due to dehydration.

NOTE: People suffering from problems due to xylitol should not consume these sugar-free candies. It can cause cramps and diarrhea.

2.Drink More Fluids:

There’s another cause of dry mouth – dehydration. This is very common.

You must drink at least 2 liters of water every day to keep yourself hydrated. If you find this difficult, you can suck on ice cubes.

More saliva will be produced when the body’s hydration is improved.

  • Drink plenty of water throughout the day. You can suck on ice cubes too.
  • Include liquid based diet in your daily meals, like stews or soups.
  • Herbal tea is also good for the body.
  • Drink juices of various fruits and vegetables.
  • Fruit smoothies are good for the body’s hydration. They also taste good.
  • Coconut water should be consumed.
  • Eat water-based fruits like watermelon and cucumber.

NOTE: Caffeinated refreshments and alcoholic drinks should be avoided, as they lead to dehydration.

3.Avoid Mouth Breathing:

Breathe through your nose. Avoid breathing through the mouth. Snoring leads to mouth breathing, and you must seek the help of your doctor to solve this problem.

4.Oil Pulling:

This Ayurvedic practice can be done by using coconut oil or any other edible oil. It moistens the mouth and removes the bad odor. It is helpful in treating dry mouth and maintains the oral health.

  • Put 1 tbsp. Of coconut oil in the mouth.
  • Move the oil in your mouth for 15 minutes by swishing thoroughly.
  • Rinse your mouth after spitting out the oil.
  • Brush your teeth.
  • You can do this daily at morning before having any meal.

NOTE: Do not consume the oil or even gargle.

5.Lemon:

Once again lemon comes to the rescue! Lemon juice can increase the saliva production. It also eliminates foul breath due to its acidic nature.

  • To a glass of water add lemon juice. Honey can be added as a sweetener. Drink this 2-3 times a day in small quantities.
  • Lemonade made at home can also be used, but it should not contain sugar.
  • Sprinkle a pinch of salt on a lemon slice. Apply it on your tongue. This will enhance the taste buds.

6.Ginger:

Ginger can make your mouth feel fresher. It can also stimulate saliva production.

  • Chew a small piece of ginger 2-3 times a day. It can cure the symptoms of dry mouth.
  • Ginger tea can also be consumed 2-3 times a day but instead of sugar, add honey.

7.Cayenne Pepper:

It is considered as one of the best home remedies for dry mouth. Along with increasing the saliva production, it also braces the taste buds. The sweet, sour and salty tastes can be distinguished better.

  • Wet your finger and take ground cayenne pepper on it and press a little. Rub it on the tongue.
  • This will stimulate the salivary glands, but you might feel a tingling or a burning sensation for a while.
  • You can add a pinch of cayenne pepper in your dishes like soups.
  • Cayenne pepper capsules are also available.

8.Aloe Vera:

Aloe Vera has been used since the ancient times as it protects the tissues present in the mouth. It also maintains your taste buds.

Consuming a 1/4th cup of Aloe Vera every day can cure dry mouth.

  • Use Aloe Vera juice to rinse your mouth a few times daily.
  • Apply Aloe Vera gel inside your mouth. Leave it for a few minutes then rinse your mouth. This can be done 2-3 times on a regular basis.

9.Use a Room Humidifier:

A humidifier or vaporizer will add moisture to the air in your room. This can help you breathe easily.

10.Moisturize and Brush:

Moisturize your lips to make those cracked lips better.

Brush your teeth regularly with fluoride toothpaste and rinse your mouth after every meal.

Use a toothbrush with soft bristles. It helps in keeping the bacteria at bay by reaching the inner corners of the teeth. It prevents dry mouth.

NOTE: Avoid mouthwashes containing alcohol.

11.Gargle:

Gargle with warm water with a pinch of salt mixed in it. Doing this 3 to 4 times a day with stimulate salivary glands.

12.Grapeseed Oil:

This oil has moisturizing property and forms a moist coat inside the mouth. Being rich in Vitamin E, it can cure mouth sores.

  • Apply grapeseed oil on the inner part of the mouth and also rub it on your tongue.
  • Leave it overnight and brush in the morning. It gives relief from dry mouth.

13.Steam:

Blocked nasal passages can cause dry mouth. So inhaling the steam from boiling water can be very helpful.

  • Pour the hot water a vessel and put your face near the brim. Cover your head with a thick cloth so that the steam cannot escape.
  • You can also you a steam machine which is available in the markets.

13.Fennel Seeds:

Chewing on fennel seeds after every meal will treat the dry mouth and bad breath. The flavonoids in these seeds increase saliva production.

  • Consume fennel seeds few times every day. It can treat dry mouth.
  • Dry roast equal amounts of fennel and fenugreek seeds in a pan. Grind the mixture and add a pinch of salt. After every meal, have half a spoon of this mixture.

14.Slippery Elm:

A slimy gel is formed when you mix slippery elm with water. It consists of mucilage which can cure dry mouth, tooth decay, and bad breath. It soothes the throat and the mouth.

  • To a cup of hot water, add 1-2 tbsp.Of slippery elm. Cover with a lid for 10 minutes. Drink this twice daily. Honey can be added as a sweetener.
  • A paste of water and slippery elm bark powder can be prepared and applied inside the mouth. Leave it for a few minutes then rinse. You can do this either once or twice on a daily basis.

15.Cardamom:

Consuming a pod of cardamom can make the mouth moist and also removed the foul breath.

  • Chew a pod of cardamom after any meal.
  • In a glass of hot water, add one tsp. of cardamom powder. After letting it steep for 10 minutes, drink it. You can have this 2-3 times a day.
  • Rinsing the mouth with lukewarm cardamom tea can also be helpful.

These are the best home remedies that are easily accessible and are very helpful in treating the dry mouth.

No more worries!

Dry Mouth at Night:

Now we know that saliva is important for good oral health, as it protects are teeth and gums from decay and infections. Some people suffer from dry mouth at night, due to the absence of saliva.

This can be very uncomfortable and can also lead to sleep deprivation. Oral health is affected negatively due to this.

Symptoms of Dry Mouth at Night:

  1. Waking up very often in the middle of the night due to thirst.
  2. Dry mouth after waking up in the morning.
  3. Constant soreness and dryness in the throat in the morning.
  4. Dry lips after waking up.
  5. Bad breath
  6. Thick and bubbly saliva in the morning.
  7. Cracked tongue with a burning sensation.

Causes of Dry Mouth at Night:

  1. Mouth breathing while sleeping.
  2. Snoring due to cold or an infection.
  3. Blockage in nasal passages due to deviated septum or sinus problems. This leads to difficulties in breathing.
  4. Use of orthodontic appliances likes a bite splint.
  5. Dry atmosphere due to air conditioning or heating.

Home Remedies for Dry Mouth at Night:

Without having known the causes of dry mouth at night, you cannot prevent it. But there are certain lifestyle alterations that one can make which can have a positive effect on the dry mouth problem.

  1. Use room humidifier or vaporizer to retain the moisture in the room.
  2. Consumption of caffeinated beverages and alcohol should be avoided, especially in the evening.
  3. Tobacco chewing should be stopped or at least cut-down.
  4. Drink plenty of water so that dehydration is avoided.
  5. During the day, chewing mint can help.
  6. Cut down acidic or spicy food from your diet.
  7. Nasal strips can be used as they will make it easier to breathe through the nose.
  8. Brush twice a day and floss your teeth. Focus should be given on oral hygiene.

Things to Remember:

  1. Avoid beverages that contain caffeine.
  2. Avoid smoking, alcoholic drinks, and chewing tobacco.
  3. Avoid medicines that cause dry mouth.
  4. Brush regularly and use fluoride toothpaste.
  5. Rinse your mouth with a fluoride based liquid.
  6. Avoid spicy and salty food, it can increase the irritation.
  7. Avoid consuming large amounts of acidic food and sugary candies.
  8. Visit your dentist twice a year.

Dry mouth can be treated right at home. So don’t stress over it.

Smile and let those teeth shine.

A healthy mouth is a pleased mouth; which ultimately is a cheerful you!

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Dr. Manaan Gandhi is the one of the young dynamic Ayurveda doctor.He started off by presenting a research paper in a national conference in Mumbai.