Being dehydrated can cause a variety of problems to occur in the body over time.
However, have you considered the fact that being dehydrated can increase the risk of a dry mouth?
“Well, what is a dry mouth,” you may be asking.
A dry mouth is a condition in the mouth that’s just as it sounds: You suffer from a mouth that’s dehydrated and lacking the proper saliva production.
Sufferers of a dry mouth face symptoms of frequent thirst, a dry or painful tongue, oral sores, a sticky and dry mouth, bad breath (halitosis), a hoarse voice, trouble speaking/chewing/eating/tasting, cracked lips, and a dry or painful throat.
A dry mouth doesn’t just cause discomfort for the sufferer; it also can increase the risk of a variety of oral-health conditions and diseases. Since saliva flow and a moist mouth provide the ability to wash away oral bacteria and food particles in the mouth, this is one of the many ways our body fights against oral health issues.
A dry mouth can increase the risk of cavities, gingivitis, and an overall buildup of plaque and even tartar. In turn, a dry mouth could lead to further oral-related issues, higher dental costs, and further discomfort if not treated in time.
One must keep in mind that fueling their body with the water it needs helps in a variety of different ways. This water nourishes our nails, hair, and skin; helps promote a healthy digestive system; prevents bloating in the body; helps regulate the body’s temperature; and even replenishes our cells, organs, and tissues that require water to function properly.
Drinking plenty of water is also great for athletes who aim to gain or keep their muscle tone (which is over 75% water) and to lose weight.
Not sure if you’re dehydrated or not?
Here are some signs you should be drinking more water:
- An increase in thirst
- Dry, cracked lips
- Heart pounding or palpitations
- Fainting or feeling faint
- Little to no sweat
- Little to no tears when crying
- Decreased urination
Severe symptoms and risks of dehydration that require medical attention ASAP include:
- A fever of 101 degrees Fahrenheit or higher
- Weight loss
- Diarrhea for two or more days
- Consistent vomiting for longer than a day
Ways to stay hydrated:
- Drink plenty of water, preferably eight 8-ounce cups of water each day. This may vary for one’s age, weight, height, and level of activity. Keep a bottled water with you when you’re away from home.
- Not much of a fan of plain, ole water? Opt for coconut water. A sugarless coconut water drink can be delicious, cooling, and refreshing. Also, consider a sugarless fruit or vegetable smoothie.
- Consume foods that are high in water content such as fruits and vegetables. Specifically, watermelon, cucumber, and celery are very refreshing and capable of providing some of the water our bodies need.
- Continue going to the dentist at least twice a year. Your dentist will be able to tell if your mouth is hydrated, and in turn, your body is also hydrated.