©2007 Publications International, Ltd. Exercise can cause you to become dehydrated and suffer from dry mouth. Keeping a water bottle nearby can help alleviate this problem.

Do loud mouths get dry mouths? Unfortunately, dry mouth isn't caused just by yapping too much or too loudly, although you can run your throat and vocal chords ragged. Dry mouth, also known as xerostomia, is a condition in which saliva production shuts down. In this article we'll take a look at a few of the home remedies that will help to alleviate the symptoms of dry mouth, as well as teach you why it occurs.

Turning on the Tap

When working at full capacity, saliva has many duties. This versatile fluid helps us talk, chew, and spit. It acts as a natural cavity-fighter by washing away food particles and plaque, and it lubricates food, works to buffer acids, and remineralizes those pearly whites. Saliva is vital in maintaining a healthy mouth, so when production decreases or stops, there is more than a dry mouth to pout about. Teeth and gums become more prone to decay and infection, and your taste buds might suffer in their taste-testing abilities.

What Causes Dry Mouth?            

Dry mouth is caused by several factors, most commonly by the use of medications. Look on almost any label of nonprescription and prescription drugs, and you'll find that dry mouth is typically listed as a possible side effect. Some of the worst offenders are those drugs designed to dry out your mucous membranes, such as antihistamines and many allergy medications. Other drugs contributing to dryness are those used to treat high blood pressure, depression, and heart disease.

Dehydration is an obvious cause of dry mouth, but dehydration doesn't always arise from the obvious reason (that is, not drinking eight glasses of H2O a day). You can become dehydrated through fever, extensive exercise, vomiting, diarrhea, burns, and blood loss.

Other causes of xerostomia are radiation therapy, menopause, surgical removal of the salivary glands, and cigarette smoking.

The primary symptom of xerostomia is, of course, a dry mouth. But this can be punctuated by myriad other conditions, including excessive thirst, a raw tongue, lip sores, difficulty swallowing, sore throat and hoarseness, bad breath, difficulty speaking, dry nasal passages, and dry lips.

But here's something to smile about: Most cases of dry mouth are easy to solve.  Take a look at a few home remedies on the next page.

For more information about concerns associated with dry mouth and dehydration, try the following links:

This information is solely for informational purposes. IT IS NOT INTENDED TO PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. Neither the Editors of Consumer Guide (R), Publications International, Ltd., the author nor publisher take responsibility for any possible consequences from any treatment, procedure, exercise, dietary modification, action or application of medication which results from reading or following the information contained in this information. The publication of this information does not constitute the practice of medicine, and this information does not replace the advice of your physician or other health care provider. Before undertaking any course of treatment, the reader must seek the advice of their physician or other health care provider.