Do you often wake up in the middle of the night with a parched throat or tongue or as if your mouth was stuffed with cotton balls? You may have a dry mouth while sleeping.
Dry mouth is a common problem affecting 10% of the general population. It is more common among older people. The condition affects saliva production in your mouth, leaving your mouth to become dry.
There is no one reason for dry mouth, in fact, it can be a result of medications or other health implications. So, how to prevent dry mouth while sleeping? Follow the guide and learn simple tips to resolve the problem.
What is Dry Mouth?
A dry mouth, also called, Xerostomia, is a condition in which your salivary glands do not produce enough saliva to keep your mouth hydrated, resulting in your throat getting dry all night.
When awake, you barely feel dry mouth symptoms as you keep your mouth hydrated with water. That said, the worst symptoms of dry mouth emerge at night while you are asleep. Since you don’t wake up every hour to hydrate your mouth, it becomes extremely dry, waking you up from sleep.
What causes Dry Mouth?
Following are some common causes of dry mouth. They include:
- Side effects of certain medications: Medications for depression, anxiety, allergies, pain, obesity, cold, acne, epilepsy, diuretics, psychotic disorders, urinary incontinence, nausea, and Parkinson’s disease can cause dry mouth.
- Side effects of certain medical treatments: Chemotherapy and other radiation treatments to the neck and head can damage the gland that produces saliva. Hence, you face a dry mouth condition.
- Side effects of certain diseases and infections: Medical conditions like HIV/AIDS, Sjögren's syndrome, diabetes, anemia, rheumatoid arthritis, Parkinson’s disease, mumps, stroke, anemia, systematic fibrosis, and hypertension cause dry mouth.
- Dehydration: Certain health implications like vomiting, diarrhea, fever, sweating, and blood loss can lead to dry mouth.
- Nerve Damage: Any injury or nerve damage in the neck or head region can also result in a dry mouth.
- Lifestyle: Unhealthy habits like smoking to chewing tobacco can ultimately impact saliva production in your mouth and cause dry mouth. Besides that, sleeping with an open mouth can aggravate the condition.
It is advised that when you visit a dentist, tell them about your lifestyle and medical history, including the surgeries you underwent, to help them determine why you have a dry mouth.
Symptoms of Dry Mouth
Dry mouth symptoms can vary from person to person, depending on their health and lifestyle. Following, we have listed some common symptoms experienced by most.
- Dry tongue and throat
- Thick and sticky saliva in the mouth upon waking up
- Bad breath
- Dried up lips
- Persistent urge to have water
- Difficulty breathing
If you experience dry mouth during, after, or between your sleep, then another cause is likely involved. This can be due to the drying up of soft tissues in your mouth.
Naturally, we are supposed to breathe through our noses only during sleep. However, when we sleep with an open mouth due to a blocked nose or allergies, we wake up with a dry mouth.
How to Prevent Dry Mouth while Sleeping?
Fortunately, dry mouth can be cured through a variety of care tips. Scroll down to learn those tips and prevent your mouth from becoming dry every now and then.
Brush and Floss
Most of the cures for oral conditions start and end with brushing. Ensure you brush twice daily, once in the morning and once before bedtime. It’s an excellent way to keep your mouth free of residues and enjoy a sound sleep. Also, don’t forget to floss once a day at any time of the day.
Drink Plenty of Water and Minimize Junk Intake
It is essential to keep yourself hydrated throughout the day and avoid spicy and acidic foods containing too much salt, especially before bedtime.
Avoid Alcohol and Caffeine Intake During the Evening Time
Caffeine causes dehydration, and so does alcohol. They increase water output in urine, causing dehydration in the body. Therefore, it is best to avoid both, especially in the evening or before bedtime.
Use a Humidifier
People with sinuses, cracked/dry lips, and bloody noses are highly susceptible to dry mouth. Using a humidifier, especially at night, will help keep your mouth hydrated during sleep.
Limit your Sodium Intake
Sodium increases your kidney functioning as they work overtime to pull out excess sodium from body cells leading to dehydration. Minimizing your sodium intake will likely treat dry mouth.
Use Nasal Strips
Evidence suggests that nasal strips greatly help treat dry mouth conditions. They keep your nostrils open during your sleep so you can breathe through them and not have a dry mouth upon waking up.
Home remedy for dry mouth while sleeping:
There are a bunch of home remedies that will prevent dry mouth and help you get a sound sleep.
- Suck on sugar-free candies or gum to stimulate saliva flow in the mouth.
- Quit smoking and tobacco use
- Breathe through your nose
- Use fluoride toothpaste
Hopefully, these tips will help you to treat a dry mouth. However, if the condition remains persistent, you should talk to your doctor and follow their recommendations.
Why is my mouth dry even though I drink a lot of water?
Most people ask why their mouth is still dry after drinking plenty of water. Well, as said previously, there is no one cause for dry mouth. It could be a side effect of a certain medication or a sign of an underlying health problem.
It is advisable to talk to your doctor and tell them about your lifestyle, habits, any medications you take, and treatments you went through to help them identify the root cause of the problem.
What causes extremely dry mouth while sleeping?
Snoring and breathing through the mouth are the top reasons that cause extremely dry mouth while sleeping.
How do I get rid of dry mouth at night?
Plug a humidifier in your room, chew sugar-free gum, or suck in sugar-free candies to get rid of dry mouth at night.
What is the fastest way to cure dry mouth?
Staying hydrated, reducing caffeine intake, avoiding breathing through your mouth, and cutting down on salty foods are some of the few tips to cure dry mouth instantly.
What deficiency causes dry mouth at night?
Typically, dry mouth results from Zinc deficiency. If not controlled, it can lead to other major oral health issues.
Is there a vitamin that helps with dry mouth?
Vitamin A can help really to cure dry mouth. It regulates your salivary glands to keep your mouth hydrated.
A dry mouth condition can affect anyone. Even the healthiest of people can experience it due to slightly bad eating habits. Try you avoid junk and maintain a healthy lifestyle to prevent the condition in the first place. Lastly, don’t forget to appear for your routine dental checkups.
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