-- Diana Kohnle
(HealthDay News) -- Dry mouth usually affects older adults, often as a side effect of a health condition or certain drugs including decongestants, antihistamines, pain relievers and diuretics, says the American Dental Association.
Symptoms of dry mouth may include a sore throat, a burning sensation, hoarse voice, nasal dryness and difficulty speaking and swallowing. If frequent dry mouth isn't treated, it can lead to tooth damage and decay.
Saliva is needed to keep the mouth moist, get rid of food build-up, and neutralize acids created by plaque that damage the teeth, the association says.
Dry mouth also can irritate oral tissues. This can lead to inflammation and increased risk of infection. See your dentist for prompt treatment, the ADA advises.
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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