Saliva And Your Oral Health

An image of saliva

If your mouth feels dry regularly, this means you’re not producing enough saliva. Saliva is an important tool that digests your food to teeth and gums strong and healthy.

If you don’t produce enough saliva, you’ll begin to experience certain conditions that cause difficulty with overall mouth functioning.

Let’s understand more about saliva production

So, What Is Saliva?

Saliva is a build-up of water, mucus, amylase, and proteins that keeps your mouth moist. When you’ve eaten, the saliva helps to digest any food debris from your meal so your mouth remains clean. Without saliva, food will remain in the mouth, and eventually, it’ll turn into bacteria. When bacteria forms inside the mouth, this will formulate into dental plaque, a sticky substance full of bacteria that coat around your smile.

As dental plaque builds, the bacteria can cling onto the teeth and produce acid, causing an acid attack and enamel erosion. Eventually, a tiny opening, or hole, will form in the center of your teeth, known as a cavity.

A patient getting a saliva test

How Is Saliva Formed?

Saliva is 98% water which contains enzymes that develop in and around your mouth to digest food. Saliva is produced from your salivary glands, and on average, the body produces a maximum of four pints of saliva a day. The teeth are coated with something called the oral mucosa, comprising mucinous substances and antibacterial components to ensure the oral cavity is lubricated with immune properties that help fight off infection.

Poor production of saliva can introduce a condition known as dry mouth. Dry mouth occurs when the gums and tongue induce swelling. This is due to the salivary glands not producing the right amount of saliva to keep your mouth moist. This is also an indication of dehydration. Your body is starved of fluids.

A lady drinking water for saliva

How You Can Stimulate Saliva

High levels of saliva help to minimize dehydration and dry mouth. To continue to produce high levels of saliva, adopt the following in your diet.

  • Water – Water is the most important ingredient to keep the mouth moist and to neutralize acids.
  • Chew On Gum Or Candy – Chewing sugarless gum and popsicles can help stimulate saliva production. Sugarless also ensures you’re not consuming high volumes of sugar.
  • Moist Liquids – Consider eating moist foods such as soup and gravy with your meals.
  • Avoid Dry Foods – Stop eating dry foods as part of a meal or a snack as you’ll begin to feel like your mouth is dry.

If you’re experiencing dry mouth or dehydration, begin adding the above tips to your lifestyle and diet and you’ll notice moist your mouth feels. You’ll digest your food better and your oral health will also remain strong and prevent periodontal disease, dental plaque, and bacteria build-up.

If you need further support, we can help! Check yourself in for an appointment at Simply Dental Chatswood today by clicking here!


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