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Dry Mouth

Causes, Symptoms & Treatment


What Is Dry Mouth?

A dry mouth, also known as xerostomia, is a condition where the mouth does not produce enough saliva. Saliva plays a crucial role in dental health, as it helps to wash away food particles, neutralise acids produced by bacteria, and prevent infections. Without enough saliva, the mouth becomes dry and uncomfortable, thereby affecting your oral health.


Symptoms Of Dry Mouth

  • Persistent Thirst: Individuals with dry mouth often experience a persistent feeling of thirst, regardless of how much water they drink. This constant need for hydration can be bothersome and affect daily activities.
  • Sticky or Dry Sensation: One of the most noticeable symptoms of dry mouth is a sticky or dry feeling in the mouth, making it uncomfortable to speak, eat, or swallow.
  • Difficulty Swallowing or Speaking: Reduced saliva flow can lead to difficulty in swallowing food and even speaking clearly, resulting in a hoarse or dry voice.
  • Sore or Dry Throat: A dry throat can cause irritation and soreness, making it uncomfortable to swallow or speak.
  • Altered Sense of Taste: Dry mouth can affect the taste buds, leading to a diminished ability to taste certain flavours or a persistent metallic taste in the mouth.


  • Bad Breath (Halitosis): Saliva helps wash away food particles and bacteria, so a lack of it can result in bad breath.
  • Cracked Lips and Mouth Sores: Insufficient saliva can cause the lips to become dry and cracked. In some cases, it may also lead to the development of mouth sores.
  • Increased Dental Problems: Saliva plays a vital role in protecting teeth from decay by neutralising acids produced by bacteria. With dry mouth, there’s an increased risk of tooth decay, gum disease, and cavities.
  • Difficulty Wearing Dentures: Those with dry mouth may find wearing dentures uncomfortable due to the lack of saliva that normally helps to keep them in place.
  • Dry, Red Tongue: The tongue may appear dry and red due to reduced moisture and irritation.
  • Difficulty with Certain Foods: Dry mouth can make it challenging to eat dry or starchy foods, like crackers or bread, as they can stick to the mouth.
  • Frequent Throat Infections: Saliva helps fight bacteria and viruses in the mouth, so a reduced flow may increase the risk of throat infections.

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Providers For:

Dry Mouth Solution in Ellenbrook

Regular dental visits are essential for maintaining good oral health, especially for individuals with dry mouth. At Coolamon Dental Centre, we offer comprehensive dental examination to help identify any underlying medical conditions that may be contributing to dry mouth and we also develop personalised treatment plans to address your individual needs and concerns.


Frequently Asked Questions

How to treat dry mouth?

Treatment for dry mouth depends on the underlying cause.

If it is caused by taking medication, your doctor may switch you to a different medication. If it is caused by a health condition, treating the condition may help alleviate the symptoms.

In some cases, your dentist may recommend using a mouthwash that contains fluoride or a saliva substitute to help moisturise the mouth.

Is there a deficiency that causes dry mouth?

Deficiencies in certain vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin A, vitamin B2, and zinc, can contribute to dry mouth. However, dry mouth is not typically caused by a single nutrient deficiency.

Can drink too much water cause dry mouth?

No, drinking too much water does not cause dry mouth. In fact, drinking water can help alleviate the symptoms of dry mouth.

Does dry mouth mean stress?

While stress can cause a variety of physical symptoms, dry mouth is not typically one of them. However, stress can contribute to habits such as smoking and alcohol consumption, which can in turn contribute to dry mouth.

What effects does dry mouth have on dental health?

A dry mouth can be caused by a variety of factors, including taking certain medications, medical conditions, and lifestyle habits. It can also be a side effect of cancer treatments such as radiation therapy and chemotherapy.

When left untreated, dry mouth can lead to a range of dental problems, including cavities, tooth decay, and gum disease. The lack of saliva can cause bacteria to grow more rapidly, leading to an increase in plaque buildup and the risk of infection.

If you have a dry mouth, it is important to see a dentist who can help you manage the condition. They can suggest saliva substitutes, provide fluoride treatments to protect your teeth, and recommend products that can keep your mouth moist. They can also teach you how to maintain good oral hygiene practices and schedule regular checkups every six months to ensure that your teeth and gums remain healthy.

Is dry mouth a symptom of diabetes?

Yes, dry mouth can be a symptom of diabetes. High blood sugar levels can cause dry mouth by reducing the production of saliva.

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Preventing Dry Mouth

There are several steps you can take to prevent dry mouth. These include:

  • Drinking plenty of water
  • Avoiding alcohol and tobacco
  • Chewing sugarless gum or sucking on sugarless candy to stimulate saliva production
  • Breathing through the nose instead of the mouth
  • Using a humidifier at night to keep the air moist

What our patients say

Google Review

My whole experience was amazing! The reception staff was friendly and very helpful, they made me feel at ease! Dr Aaron was an amazing dentist who is professional and I felt safe and relaxed while he sorted out my problem! They are caring people who is professional and I would highly recommend this dentist! Keep up the good work! I will see yous soon!

Google Review

Everyone working at Coolamon Dental are so helpful & friendly. Dr. Gen is so patient with me knowing I am terrified of going to the dentist. The ladies in reception put you at ease as soon as you come in the door. They are so friendly & have a laugh with you which helps when you are so nervous. The dentist explains everything that's going to be done so there are no surprises. The rooms are absolutely spotless. I now don't mind going to this dentist. Can highly recommend Coolamon Dental.

Google Review

Been three times, three different dentists…all brilliant and caring. The reception team are friendly too. Highly recommend. I’ve always found it difficult to find a caring dentist but each time here I am not disappointed. Keep up the great approach it’s highly appreciated.

Google Review

Shaun and Jenny were fantastic.
I came in for a toothache and they were able to fit me in. I'm a nervous patient and Shaun did an amazing job of calming my nerves and explaining the issue and options and then sorted the problem with minimal discomfort.

I'll be back for regular checkups!

Google Review

The staff here are all very friendly and helpful. The dentist was gentle and thoughtful. As I'm in a wheelchair he and his nurse were also very helpful. I recommend this practice and will go to them in the future.

Google Review

Absolutely the best dental practice I have ever used in the last 20 years. Wonderful and friendly reception staff, especially Serena, who is the model that all reception staff, everywhere, should aspire to. Very skilled dentists who dish out sensible and affordable solutions to dental issues.

Google Review

I’m a very anxious patient but my experience today was amazing. I was made very comfortable and Dr Aron was so gentle and friendly. I will be recommending Coolamon Dental Centre to everyone. Very happy customer here.

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Where to find us

Coolamon Dental Centre 

56A Mornington Pkwy,
Ellenbrook WA 6069

Tel: (08) 9296 9970


You can book an appointment with us online or call us at 9296 9970. Please note your dental appointment is considered confirmed at the time of booking. We have reserved the time with our dentists, dental assistants and hygienists, especially for you. We will contact you prior to your scheduled appointment with a courtesy reminder but ultimately it is your responsibility to ensure that you arrive on time for your appointment. We know that life can get in the way and if you need to reschedule, please give us at least one business day’s notice and we will be happy to find a time that better suits you.

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