Dry mouth occurs when your mouth can’t produce enough saliva. While this isn’t a serious problem, it can be a bothersome symptom. Detailed below are 10 home treatments that can help relieve dry mouth.
If you have dry mouth, be sure you’re drinking enough water every day. Staying hydrated can help prevent the minor dehydration that’s causing dry mouth. However, you also need to make sure that you don’t drink too much water at once. Pace yourself and sip water slowly and regularly throughout the day to prevent an upset stomach.
A dry mouth may also be accompanied by other symptoms, such as:
- Bad breath
- Bleeding gums and decaying teeth
- A dry and raw feeling in the mouth
- Decreased ability to taste
- Dry and chapped lips
- Dry cough and dry nasal passage
- Dysphagia, or difficulty swallowing
- Pale gums
- Sores and ulcers
- A sore throat
Maintain good oral hygiene
Poor oral health can cause dry mouth. Dry mouth can also cause poor oral health. No matter what the underlying cause of dry mouth is, you need to improve your oral hygiene.
Good oral hygiene includes brushing and flossing every day. You can also gargle with water or mouthwash after meals to help wash away food particles that may get lodged in your teeth and cause bad breath. (Related: Stop halitosis in its tracks with these 8 natural remedies for bad breath.)
Gargle with alcohol-free mouthwash
Gargling with mouthwash can help boost your oral health, but you must also consider the ingredients in it. Mouthwashes that contain alcohol kill bacteria, but they can also cause dry mouth.
Suck on sugar-free lozenges
Sucking on a sugar-free lozenge or candy can help prevent your mouth from drying out. Besides keeping your mouth closed, it helps keep saliva circulating. Sugar-free lozenges or candies can also help temporarily relieve dryness or prevent it from occurring. Make sure you buy only sugar-free candies because sugary sweets can damage your teeth.
Chew on sugar-free gum
Sugar-free candies and sugar-free gum can help keep saliva flowing and stimulate saliva production. If you don’t have candy, chew on sugar-free gum to prevent dry mouth. While chewing gum is a temporary solution, it can provide quick relief from dry mouth.
Drink ginger tea or use ginger products
Drink ginger tea or use ginger sprays and other products with ginger to help stimulate the salivary glands and increase saliva production. According to a 2017 clinical trial, ginger spray can be used as an alternative treatment for dry mouth.
Follow the recipe below to make a hydrating cup of ginger tea:
Ingredients for 1 serving:
- 1-inch piece of ginger, peeled and cut into thin slices
- 2 cups of water
- Lemon juice (optional)
- Honey or brown sugar to taste
- Boil the ginger with water in a small pot. Reduce the liquid to a simmer and steep for five to 10 minutes, depending on how strong you want the tea to taste.
- Remove the tea from the heat and stir in lemon juice and a bit of honey or brown sugar. Drink warm or chill before serving.
Use a humidifier
If you spend most of your day indoors, you may notice that dry indoor air can make symptoms of dry mouth worse. Relieve your symptoms by using a humidifier in the rooms you use the most.
Adding humidity to the air with a humidifier can help keep your airways and mouth moist, which can help prevent dry mouth.
Check medication side effects
Some drugs can cause dry mouth, like those used to treat the following conditions:
If you take medications for any of these conditions and you frequently suffer from dry mouth, check with your physician or a natural health practitioner for alternative remedies.
Avoiding drying habits
Some remedies can temporarily relieve dry mouth, but avoiding habits that cause it in the first place is key to getting rid of dry mouth for good.
According to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, alcohol and tobacco can dry out your mouth. Quitting smoking and drinking can help prevent dry mouth in some cases.
Note that consuming caffeinated drinks like coffee, energy drinks and green tea can also dry out your mouth.
Breathe with your mouth closed
Some people with respiratory illnesses or underlying medical conditions breathe with their mouth open. This can quickly dry out the airways. Engaging in activities that cause heavy breathing, like strenuous physical activities, can also make you breathe with your mouth open.
Do you wake up every morning with a dry mouth? You may also be sleeping with your mouth open, which means you inhale dry air. Always keep your mouth closed and breathe through your nose to improve saliva flow.
If you’re not used to taking any of the remedies listed above, consult your physician or a natural health practitioner to check for possible drug or allergic interactions.
Dry mouth is a minor complaint that can be annoying, but it can also lead to more serious problems if left untreated. To get rid of dry mouth, try natural remedies like drinking enough water every day and maintaining good oral hygiene.