If you suffer from a dry mouth, eating can sometimes be a challenge. A lack of saliva in the mouth can make eating certain foods irritating and sometimes painful. Take a look at the category of foods and drinks below which you may wish to avoid, and in some cases, how you can make them more enjoyable.
Sugary foods and drinks – One of the main functions of saliva is to breakdown the sugars we consume from our favourite sugary treats. However, a large number of people with dry mouth tend to be at an increased risk of developing decay, and more serious dental diseases such as gum disease and periodontitis due to insufficient quantities of saliva to breakdown sugar. For this reason sugary foods and drinks are best avoided.
Spicy foods – Without saliva to protect the inside lining of the mouth (the oral mucosa) spicy foods can be very irritating. Why not try calming down your favourite curry with some yoghurt?
Dry foods – As obvious as it sounds, dry foods should definitely be avoided as they can be very difficult to swallow. Furthermore, dry foods with sharp edges such as crackers and tortilla chips can cause irritation when trying to chew and swallow. Try softening dry foods with your favourite mild sauces or dipping in drinks.
Crusty bread – Crusty breads take a lot of effort to chew and swallow safely and can dry the mouth out further. Why not opt for a softer bread or try spreading with a soft spread like hummus or soft cheese?
Tough meats – Similar to crusty bread, tough meats can also take a lot of effort to chew and swallow. Your saliva plays an important part in breaking down food when we chew and swallow. Tough meats may be best avoided altogether but it if you enjoy eating meat why not try a softer meat that has been slow cooked? Try adding sauces and gravies to aid effective chewing and swallowing. Finally, ensure you are frequently sipping water during meals to help with swallowing and keeping the mouth moist.
Drinks with alcohol - Alcohol acts as a diuretic. This means as your body breaks down alcohol, it removes water from your blood through urinating resulting in dehydration symptoms - including a dry mouth. For this reason alcohol should be avoided, even in your mouthwash! Have you tried Oralieve® Alcohol Free Mouthrinse?
Do you suffer from dry mouth? Does it impact your food choices? What are your favourite dry mouth friendly recipes?