What are the Dangers of Dry Mouth?

Posted on: January 16, 2019

Dry mouth is a common occurring thing that affects a lot of people daily. Dry mouth typically occurs because not enough saliva is being produced, therefore, causing the mouth to feel dry. Sometimes it is temporary due to shortness of breath or if the body is dehydrated. However, for some, it is an ongoing problem that can be very irritating.

If the mouth is constantly dry and deprived of saliva, there are serious oral health problems that may pop up. These can be detrimental to the health of the mouth, and inevitably the entire body.

Knowing what the dangers of dry mouth are can be beneficial to those who may be experiencing some form of it. Whether it’s ongoing or a temporary feeling, it’s good to be aware of what the dangers are in case it persists.

Dangers of dry mouth

Tooth decay

Saliva has minerals in it that help cleans the teeth and the surrounding areas of built up foods, plaque, and even bacteria. These minerals act as a way to re-mineralize the teeth so that they stay in healthy shape. If the mouth is so dry that saliva is not being produced, the teeth are prone to decay over time.


Just like with tooth decay, the saliva contains agents that work to fight against bacteria. A proper flow of saliva within the mouth will fight against built-up tartar or plaque, on or around the gums. Without a constant flow of saliva, the gums (right along with the mouth) will remain dry which inevitably may cause a build-up of bacteria along the gum lines.

Bad breath

Although bad breath doesn’t seem as detrimental to one’s oral health as diseases or decay, it is still dangerous and not great for the overall oral health. When the mouth is salivating properly, the saliva works with the oxygen that we inhale in order to treat the bacteria that enters the mouth. If the mouth is too dry and doesn’t have proper saliva flow then the oxygen that we intake will only make the mouth drier, as well as not fight against the bacterias that cause bad breath.

Enamel erosion

If the mouth is too dry then that means everything within the mouth is also experiencing a dry spell. The teeth and gums are susceptible to dryness which can potentially cause erosion on the enamel of the teeth. The teeth’s enamel relies heavily on a constant flow of saliva to ensure that acidic food particles don’t stick and wear the enamel thin. Without the saliva flow, the enamel of each tooth is prone to erosion.

Inability to speak normally

While our speech is a big part of who we are, the inability to do so properly could be a downfall. When the mouth becomes dry, it doesn’t allow for saliva to flow throughout the mouth. Without saliva, our words don’t come out as right. The tongue is unable to glide over the teeth or roof of the mouth, which makes speaking more difficult.


Dry mouth doesn’t seem to be as dangerous as many other orally related health problems, but the aftermath of a consistent dry mouth spell can be dangerous to the oral health of anyone. Saliva is a crucial part of maintaining good oral hygiene, and without it, the mouth can actually fail to work properly.

If you still have questions or concerns regarding dry mouth, please reach out to us! We’re happy to assist in any way that we can. Dry mouth is discomforting, and it can be very dangerous.

Request an appointment here: https://www.pleasantdental.net or call Pleasant Dental at (203) 290-3648 for an appointment in our Newtown office.

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