Many of us get more exercise in the summer, which is good for us. It does have a few risks, though, including becoming dehydrated if we aren’t careful about water intake. Dehydration is just one of several things that can contribute to summer dry mouth. That’s a concern not just because it’s uncomfortable, but because a shortage of saliva can lead to tooth decay.
Dry mouth doesn’t have to be a big deal, though. Dr. Jeffery Spilman can relieve your symptoms and improve your oral health with dry mouth treatment. He’ll suggest simple changes you can make, such as avoiding sugary foods and drinks, and may also recommend products to replenish your saliva.
If you’ve got dry mouth symptoms like chronic bad breath, mouth sores, or frequent thirst, call Jeffery Spilman, D.D.S. at 727-645-4727.
Summer Dry Mouth Is Not Uncommon
Some of your favorite summer activities can worsen dry mouth. Your body tends to produce less saliva in summer months. You perspire more, thanks to high temperatures and summer activities. And if you’re spending time in the pool to cool off, the chlorine used to keep water clean also dries out your mouth.
Fun activities like vacations and cookouts can aggravate dry mouth too. Most folks relax their oral hygiene routines while traveling. Eating out more and indulging in less healthy foods is common too. Whether you’re at an outdoor party or on a road trip, it’s tempting to enjoy sugary drinks like soda or acidic drinks like lemonade. Both kinds of beverages can erode tooth enamel, leaving you more susceptible to cavities.
If you’re an allergy sufferer, you breathe more through your mouth because your nasal passages are blocked. Again, this makes dry mouth worse.
Stay Hydrated This Summer
Drinking more water is the most important thing you can do to relieve dry mouth symptoms. Ninety-nine percent of saliva is water, so you need to stay hydrated to replenish it. Drink at least two liters of water a day in summer months, more if you are participating in sports or other activities.
That seems like a lot, but there are many ways you can drink more water:
- Eat fresh fruits and veggies. A portion of your water can come through tasty summer foods that are high in water content, like watermelon, cucumbers, and tomatoes. They’re in season now, so they’re especially affordable.
- Dilute your drinks. You don’t have to go cold turkey with summer drinks like soda, lemonade, or iced tea. But drink them with lots of ice and/or some added water, so they’re more beneficial.
- Add flavors to your water. Liven up your liquid! Boost the flavor profile by adding bits of fresh fruit, slices of vegetable, or fresh herbs.
- Keep water handy. You know the old cliche about “out of sight, out of mind?” The opposite is true as well. Keep a pitcher or bottle of water in areas where you spend a lot of time.
- Order water at the restaurant. Get a glass of water and drink it before restaurant meals. This is good for your mouth, and the rest of you too if you’re trying to cut calories. You’ll feel full sooner, so will eat less.
- Go high-tech with an app. There’s an app for everything, including drinking more water. You’ll get reminders and alerts from your phone with apps like Daily Water Free (Apple Store) or Carbodroid (Google Play).
More Tips to Deal With Summer Dry Mouth
Drinking water is important, but it’s not the only way to fight summer dry mouth. Get dry mouth relief in summer – or any time – with these tips:
- Lower caffeine consumption. Caffeine is a diuretic, as is alcohol. So limit your intake of both.
- Moisten dry foods with broth, sauces, or butter.
- Rinse your mouth with water after you consume acidic fruits or fruit juice.
- Limit your exposure to chlorine. If you’ve got your own pool, keep the Ph level around 7.5, a level that keeps water clean without drying out your mouth. Rinse your mouth when you exit the pool.
- Enjoy sugar-free mints or chew sugar-free gum. They’ll increase saliva production and freshen your breath too.
- Use a lip balm to relieve discomfort from dry or cracked lips.
- Give up smoking and other tobacco products.
- Use a humidifier in your room at night.
If you’ve got summer dry mouth, call Jeffery Spilman, D.D.S. at 727-645-4727.