Hello my Zebras and Spoonies! Thanks for coming and hanging out with me today, I’m glad that you are here. Today, I’m going to be recommending a product. Biotene is a product that I have been using for years and it is the primary reason that I have been able to maintain my oral health.
So, let’s first talk about having a dry mouth. If you look up a medication, the odds are high that one of the possible side effects for that medication is that it can cause you to have a dry mouth. Even those drugs that are sold over the counter. For the most part, this side effect is viewed as little more then a comfort or annoyance issue. On a day to day basis, that’s probably true. However, over the course of time, having a dry mouth is very likely to lead to dental decay and gum disease. This often leads to people loosing their teeth and suffering oral infections.
If you suffer having a dry mouth, there are ways to treat it. The first is to review your medications and evaluate if there are any of those medications that could be causing or contributing to the problem. Then you have to decide if you can change or discontinue that medication. For those of us with chronic illnesses, we often choose to take medications which are likely adding to the problem.
The second step in treating dry mouth is to use an oral moisturizer. There are several of these on the market. They come in sprays, tablets and gels. I personally recommend: Biotene Oral Balance Moisturizing Gel.
- The first reason I recommend it is that there are no added dyes or flavors. This is a huge win for those of us that have MCAS or allergies and need to limit the amount of additives in our products. I personally cannot have spearmint or wintergreen which makes finding a good dental product rather difficult as they often add mint for flavoring.
- It is really easy to use and you have a lot of control over how much you are using at a time. It can be a lot more difficult to dose the sprays and tablets. I found that I would have to stand there and spray my mouth about 100 times or shovel the tablets in by the handful in order to feel that they were helping.
- As a gel, I feel that it better coats the mouth and has a better staying power then the sprays and tablets.
- This is a really low risk option. There is a low risk that you could be allergic to one of the ingredients and it contains salt so there is a chance that it can increase your salt intake related risks. That’s it. There are very few interventions, especially drugs, that come with only 2 listed potential risks.
Just like any possible treatment option, there are down sides. For me, those are:
- It works best when you use it regularly, every 4 hours on a consistent schedule. This is tough for me. I often forget to carry it with me when I am out and about and thus can’t use it.
- You should wait to eat or drink for about a half hour after using the gel. This gives it a chance to soak in and work. Again, this is a failure for planning on my part.
- It doesn’t have the greatest taste, but there are versions of this product that have flavors added if this is a major problem for you.
I have been regularly taking prescription medications for more then twenty years now. Despite having dry mouth from several of those medications, I have good oral health. I have never had a cavity and I have all my teeth other then the wisdom teeth that came in impacted. I have been using biotene for most of those twenty years to maintain my oral health. And I will even confess that due to having nerve damage from the wisdom teeth being impacted and extracted, I have chronic dental pain. Because of this, I have not brushed my teeth daily since I have my wisdom teeth extracted when I was 19. I am now 41. I also recommend using oral mints or gum with xylitol after eating as an adjunct to brushing or a replacement for brushing your teeth if this is a problem for you.
The current medical recommendation is to brush your teeth at least twice a day at least a half hour after having consumed food or fluids. And I’m not saying that brushing your teeth is a bad practice. But I am going to say that there are many hurdles for making sure that this happens. Additionally, most people don’t brush their teeth in a manner that actually provides much benefit. Because of this, I’d say that using xylitol gum or mints just might be a better option. It can be used most any where, even in places that brushing your teeth wouldn’t be an option. You can use xylitol right after consuming food or fluids which makes it more likely that you’ll remember to do it. Most people chew gum or suck on a mint for a much longer period of time then they brush their teeth for. Because of this, the xylitol has a better chance to do the job of reducing the microbial load in your mouth. Gum removes residue as well as brushing.
Well, that’s about it for my rambling today. Thanks for coming and spending some time with me. If you like what you read, click on that like button. It really does help! Until we talk again, you take care of yourselves!