in

Practical Tips For Dry Mouth

Explore useful tips that can help relieve your dry mouth symptoms.

Practical Tips For Dry Mouth

“Dry mouth is also called xerostomia. It refers to a lowering of the quality and amount of saliva. Saliva helps break down food and start the digestion process. It also helps prevent mouth infections and tooth decay by lowering acid levels in the mouth and cleaning the teeth and gums. If there isn’t enough saliva, the mouth cannot clean itself properly and the teeth can lose minerals.

Dry mouth can also cause difficulty chewing, swallowing and talking. Severe dry mouth can interfere with your ability to maintain good nutrition.” – source: cancer.ca

Many cancer organizations share their tips on what helps with dry mouth from chemo. We’ve curated a list of all the best tips. Oh, and you can submit your tips or add comments to tips submitted by others.

#1 Limit your caffeine intake

"Limit your caffeine intake because caffeine can make your mouth drier." - source: mayoclinic.org

"Avoid irritants, such as alcohol, tobacco, and caffeine. Remember that caffeine is found in many sodas as well as in coffee and tea." - source: fda.gov

submitted by

#2 Ask your doctor or specialist nurse about artificial saliva

"Ask your doctor or specialist nurse about artificial saliva if you have no saliva. This comes as: a lozenge that you suck, a spray, a mouth gel. There are different types of artifical saliva. You might need to try a few to find the one that suits you." - source: cancerresearchuk.org

"There are also some prescription products available to help with a dry mouth. These include artificial saliva sprays (for example AS Saliva Orthana® or Glandosane® sprays), saliva stimulating tablets, and the Biotene® range of products (which include toothpaste, mouthwash and gel)." - source: pancreaticcancer.org.uk

submitted by

#3 Keep your lips moist

"Keep your lips moist with water based gels such as: Surgi-Lube ®, K-Y Jelly ®, Oral Balance ®, Mouth Moisturizer ® ***If you are not prone to mouth sores you may also try lanolin-based or cocoa butter based lip moisturizers such as Lanolelle ® ." -  source: bccancer.bc.ca

"Keep your lips moist with lip salves." - source: rogelcancercenter.org

submitted by

#4 Sip water frequently – Stay hydrated.

"To help keep your mouth moist, sip water, juices and other fluids frequently throughout the day. Carry a water bottle, so it is easy for you to sip water frequently." - source: cancer.ca

"Stay hydrated. Carry a water bottle whenever possible, and try to drink at least 64 ounces of fluids every day." - source: headandneck.org

submitted by

#5 Choose foods that are easier to chew and swallow

"- Choose soft foods like scrambled eggs, puddings, and ice cream.
- Avoid dry foods.
- Cut your food into small pieces to make it easier to chew and swallow.
- Soups and stews are good options, as long as meats are soft or cut into small pieces.
- Try mashed potatoes and rice instead of crackers or breads.
- Choose canned fruits or applesauce instead of raw fruits.
- Puddings, ice cream, and sorbet are also good options.
- Serve foods with gravy, broths, or sauces. This will make them easier to chew and swallow.
- Season your food with citrus and herbs instead of salt or hot spices." - source: pearlpoint.org

submitted by

#6 Avoid spicy foods

"- Avoid hot, spicy, or acidic foods.
- Avoid chewy candies, tough meats, and hard raw fruits or vegetables." - source: cancer.org

submitted by

#7 Humidifier at night

"A cool mist humidifier at night can be helpful if you have a very dry mouth, check with your health care team." - source: cancercouncil.com.au

"Use a humidifier in your home, especially in the bedroom." - source: uofmhealth.org

submitted by

#8 Rinse your mouth

"Rinse 4 to 6 times a day with a mixture of salt and baking soda (mix ½ teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon baking soda in 1 cup of warm water)." - source: yalecancercenter.org

"Rinse your mouth as often as you can with one of the following rinses. This will help remove food particles and put a “fresh” taste in your mouth.

Rinse A
- ¼ tsp. salt
- 1 cup water

Rinse B
- ¼ tsp. baking soda
- 1 cup water

Rinse C
- ¼ tsp. glycerin
- 1 cup water

Rinse D
- soda water" - source: bccancer.bc.ca

submitted by

#9 Avoid chocolate and pastry

"Avoid chocolate and pastry, as they can stick to the roof of your mouth." - source: macmillan.org.uk

submitted by

#10 If dry mouth is due to infection

"If dry mouth is due to infection, medications for treating the infection may be prescribed such as:

Antifungals: nystatin,clotrimizole, fluconozole
Antibacterials:  Mouthwash antiseptic, rinses are the basis of the oral decontamination regimen.
Antivirals: acyclovir (Zovirax®) or famciclovir (Famvir®)" - source: chemocare.com

submitted by

#11 Speech therapists

"Speech therapists who work on the oncology rehabilitation team may help patients with an oral hygiene regimen to address dry mouth. Specially trained in working with the mouth and throat muscles, speech pathologists may also be instrumental in teaching patients techniques on how to swallow, to increase salivary secretions, and to eat and drink without gagging or choking. They often work with other cancer care clinicians on the patient’s diet and pain management routine to craft a personalized plan designed to yield an appropriate outcome." - source: cancercenter.com

submitted by

#12 Suck ice chips

"A chemo side effect are mouth sores and dry mouth so the drs told me to eat ice chips." - juliette_spencer / Instagram

"I sucked on ice or frozen grapes, anything frozen and ice cold during my infusion. Yes, I was freezing but it helped. The super cold constricted the blood vessels in my mouth and the chemo didn’t get it too harsh? Not sure if this is true, but it worked for me! I think it’s the same theory with the cold cap so you don’t lose your hair. There was a lady who would keep her hands and feet in buckets of ice water during her infusions so she didn’t lose her nails or get neuropathy" - eliza0328 / Instagram

"Suck ice chips"- source: cancer.ie

submitted by

#13 Water with lemon in the morning and at night before bed

"A natural remedy my doc gave me? Water with lemon in the morning and at night before bed. It helps your mouth to salivate for whatever reason." - beautyinbeastmodee / Instagram

submitted by

#14 Biotene toothpaste and mouthwash

"I've been using Biotene toothpaste and mouthwash and it's helping! Food is tasting better too." - amandacan2.0 / Instagram

"Biotene® products (mouthwash, toothpaste and chewing gum that have the pH of saliva) are available without a prescription and can be effective for treating dry mouth." - source: oncolink.org

submitted by

#15 Sucking on hard candy

submitted by

#16 Try acupuncture

"New grant will study if acupuncture can prevent xerostomia, or dry mouth, in head and neck cancer patients receiving radiation." - MD Anderson Cancer Center / Youtube

"A traditional Chinese medicine technique, acupuncture involves the gentle, often-painless application of thin needles to strategic pressure points. Acupuncturists may help patients who have not found relief from dry mouth with toothpastes and mouthwashes or prescription medications. A 2011 study published in the journal Cancer found that acupuncture “significantly reduced” dry mouth in the head and neck cancer patients studied and improved their quality of life. These providers may also work with other clinicians who approach dry mouth from a dietary, medicinal and oncology rehabilitation standpoint to enhance patients’ overall symptom management." - source: cancercenter.com

"Acupuncture has been shown to decrease these side effects allowing the patient to be able to swallow, eat and drink normally, protect the health of the teeth and gums and reduce the incidence of infections, pain and swelling in the mouth and throat during radiation therapy." - source: huffpost.com

submitted by

#17 Use toothpaste with fluoride when brushing

“- Perform oral hygiene at least four times per day (after each meal and before bedtime).
– Floss once a day.
– The mouth (oral cavity) should be rinsed immediately after meals.
– Dentures need to be brushed and rinsed after meals.
– Only use toothpaste with fluoride when brushing.
– Apply prescription strength fluoride gel at bedtime unless you do not have any teeth.
– Rinse with salt and baking soda solution 4-6 times a day (1 tsp. salt, 1 tsp. baking soda, and 1 quart of water).
– Avoid rinses containing alcohol.” source: oncolink.org

submitted by

#18 Do not smoke

"Do not smoke cigarettes, cigars, pipes, or chew tobacco and avoid drinking alcohol. These are all very irritating and drying to a sore mouth."  source: dana-farber.org

submitted by

Add your submission

Image Video Audio Text Embed

This field is required

Drop Images Here

or

You don't have javascript enabled. Media upload is not possible.

Get image from URL

Maximum upload file size: 2 MB.

Processing...

This field is required

Drop Video Here

or

You don't have javascript enabled. Media upload is not possible.

e.g.: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WwoKkq685Hk

Add

Supported services:

Maximum upload file size: 2 MB.

Processing...

This field is required

Drop Audio Here

or

You don't have javascript enabled. Media upload is not possible.

e.g.: https://soundcloud.com/community/fellowship-wrapup

Add

Supported services:

Maximum upload file size: 2 MB.

Processing...

This field is required

e.g.: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WwoKkq685Hk

Supported services:

Processing...

This post was created with our nice and easy submission form. Create your post!

Report

What do you think?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Nausea Relief Products You Can Get On Amazon (Open list) (12 submissions)

What To Do When You Lose Your Appetite?

What To Do When You Lose Your Appetite? (Open list) (21 submissions)