The Importance of Saliva


What is saliva and why do we need it? Saliva is a watery substance that is composed of mostly water, mucus and minerals that gives your mouth moisture. Saliva plays a very vital role in your mouth’s everyday functioning. It helps to act as a natural cleanser for the teeth by washing away some of the food and bacteria in our mouth. It also helps us digest food, taste, and swallow our food. Saliva also helps to prevent you from having bad breath.

Too little Saliva

When we have too little saliva in our mouth then this can cause many problems, but first what causes the lack of saliva? Dry mouth or lack of salivation is often times either caused by a chronic disease or medications we take. Don’t know if you medications cause dry mouth you can easily ask you pharmacist or read about the side effects on the box. If one of the side effects says xerostomia (which means dry mouth) then yes this medicine does cause dry mouth. Dry mouth can lead to many issues with you oral health. It can cause you to have bad breath, chronic cavities, and your gums and tongue can become swollen, which can lead to gum disease. All of these are cause to be concern. So what can you do about them? There are a few things you can try. Biotene is an over the counter mouthwash and toothpaste that seems to have some success with helping produce saliva. Xylomelts, which can sometimes be hard to come by, are great for helping to produce saliva. They are like mints that you stick in you cheek and leave there they do all the work for you. One of the last things you can try is a prescription from you doctor. There are certain medicines that you can take that will help increase salivation.

Too much Saliva

Too much saliva doesn’t seem like a bad thing right? Well often it can be more annoying than bad. Sometimes it can make it difficult for someone to swallow or it causes you to drool. Certain things you eat could be a trigger for over salivation. The best way to combat this issue is to try a change of diet and see if that doesn’t help. If the saliva persist then I would recommended seeing you doctor for further investigation into what the cause might be.

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.