Reviewed by Dr. Kerri Font, DDS

Reading Time: 4 minutes

If you’re a denture wearer, you may be familiar with the discomfort that dry mouth causes. While many people believe that dentures themselves cause dry mouth, this is not the case.

In this blog post, we’ll explore the causes, effects, and treatment options for dry mouth in patients with dentures.

Table of Contents

Causes of Dry Mouth with Dentures

Dry mouth, also known as xerostomia, occurs when the salivary glands are not producing enough saliva to keep the mouth moist. There are several possible reasons for this, including:

  • Prescribed medications or medical treatments
  • Dehydration
  • Smoking or use of tobacco products
  • Aging
  • Certain illnesses such as diabetes, digestive problems, liver dysfunction and salivary gland tumors
  • Radiation therapy

It’s important to note that dentures themselves do not cause dry mouth. However, wearing dentures may exacerbate the condition, especially if they are not fitting well or your mouth is not used to them.

Key Takeaway

Dry mouth occurs when the salivary glands do not produce enough saliva to keep the mouth moist. Saliva helps to maintain gum tissue health, which is essential for denture stability. Dry mouth is a concern for individuals with implant-supported dentures because it can lead to infection and implant failure.

Why Saliva is Important for Denture Wearers

Saliva plays a vital role in the overall oral health of the mouth.  It helps to:

  • Keep the mouth moist and comfortable.
  • Aid in chewing, swallowing, and digestion.
  • Protect against tooth decay and gum disease by neutralizing acids produced by bacteria.
  • Prevent infections by washing away food particles and bacteria.
  • Maintain gum tissue health, which is essential for denture stability.

When the mouth is dry, issues such as difficulty speaking or eating, bad breath, and an increased risk of infection can arise. This is why it’s important for denture wearers to address dry mouth and seek treatment if needed.

Solutions and Remedies to Increase Saliva

There are several remedies you can try to increase saliva flow and alleviate dry mouth symptoms. These include:

  • Drink plenty of water throughout the day.
  • Chew sugar-free gum or suck on sugar-free candy to stimulate salivary glands.
  • Use a saliva substitute or over-the-counter oral moisturizers, such as Biotene Dry Mouth Gel.
  • Eat xylitol tablets for dry mouth, as they can help increase saliva production.
  • Use a mouth spray such as Allday Dry Mouth Spray for quick relief from dry mouth discomfort.
  • Discuss the problem with your doctor or dentist, who may adjust or recommend alternative medications if they believe your dry mouth is medication-related.

Tips for Keeping Dentures Comfortable with Dry Mouth

For denture wearers experiencing dry mouth, there are additional steps you can take to maintain comfort and oral health:

  • Make sure your dentures fit well; loose dentures can exacerbate the discomfort caused by dry mouth.
  • Clean your dentures daily with a soft toothbrush and non-abrasive denture cleanser.
  • Use a denture adhesive to help keep them in place and provide added comfort.
  • Schedule regular appointments with your dental professional to monitor your oral health and the condition of your dentures.

The Effects of Dry Mouth on Implant-Supported Dentures

An implant-supported denture is a type of overdenture that is supported by and attached to implants in the mouth. Unlike traditional dentures that rest on the gums, these are anchored firmly with the help of dental implants.

Dry mouth is concerning for individuals with implants because it can lead to an increased risk of infection and implant failure. This is because saliva helps to protect against bacteria, and without enough saliva, the mouth becomes a breeding ground for harmful bacteria.

If you have implant-supported dentures and are experiencing dry mouth, it’s essential to seek treatment right away. Your dentist will discuss your lifestyle, medical history and the medications you are taking to determine the cause of your dry mouth. If they think your medication is causing it, they may recommend that you see your primary physician to see if there is an alternative medication available.

Some lifestyle changes you can make right away include:

  • Cut back on sugar, caffeine and alcohol
  • Quit smoking
  • Use a humidifier in your home

Highlands Ranch Periodontics

Your Periodontist in Highlands Ranch, CO

At Highlands Ranch Periodontics, we understand the unique challenges that denture wearers face. If you are experiencing dry mouth with your dentures or implant-supported dentures, we are here to help. Our experienced team offers personalized treatment options to ensure you maintain a healthy and comfortable smile. 

Dry mouth is not just a minor inconvenience; it can have serious effects on your oral health. Don’t ignore the symptoms; seek treatment and keep smiling with confidence!  To book an appointment with Dr. Mike Norouzinia or Dr. Kerri Font, call (303) 683-1144 or complete the online booking form.

Additional Resources

How Long Can You Keep Your Teeth With Gum Disease?

Dental-Implant Supported Bridge: Restoring Function and Aesthetics for Multiple Missing Teeth

All-on-4 Dental Implants Step-by-Step: Surgical Process Explained

Categories: Periodontics