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Patients with dry mouth increasingly visiting dentists

Academy of General Dentistry

Patients are not just visiting the dentist to enquire about dental implants but are increasingly coming to discuss their experience of dry mouths.

One in four adults in the US has the condition, which means up to 25 per cent of the population could be at risk of tooth decay.

With the prevalence of dry pallets on the increase, a study by scientists at the Academy of General Dentistry (AGD) has identified that xerostomia, as the condition is known, could be exacerbated by taking medication.

It was established by the survey that 91 per cent of dentists found that patients coming to them with dry mouth had a regular intake of at least one medication.

Dr Cindy Kleiman, from AGD, commented: "The number of xerostomia cases has increased greatly over time because people are taking more and more medications. General dentists are seeing this trend in their offices."

Medication that is routinely administered, such as painkillers, anti-depressants, tranquilisers, diuretics and antihistamines, contribute to the condition, particularly when they are combined.

Xerostomia is also thought to be more prevalent in smokers and can impinge on a sufferer's ability to eat and speak.

© Adfero Ltd

 

Dentistry news update: 11/07/2009