What’s it made of? The saliva in your mouth is comes from blood and is basically the bloodstream of your mouth. It helps build and maintain the health of the soft and hard tissues in your mouth (your gums, tongue, teeth). While made of mostly water, it also has electrolytes, mucus, and antibacterial compounds and enzymes.
Produced by your salivary glands in your mouth, when you have very little saliva, or dry mouth, the chances of getting cavities and gum disease and infections go up. That’s why you want to be aware if your medication may cause dry mouth so you can stay on top of it.
What does saliva do? Saliva comes with many benefits. Because of the compounds within saliva, it can:
— Neutralize acids in the mouth, which left if unchecked could erode the teeth
— Cleans the mouth—washing away debris and bacteria from teeth and gums
— Kills bacteria—which prevents the development of cavities
— Strengthens teeth by providing high levels of fluoride, calcium and phosphate ions
Because saliva is made when you chew, a good way to stimulate saliva production is to chew sugarless gum. This is helpful after you eat a snack or even a meal where you can’t brush your teeth afterwards. The saliva produced can help wash away the food particles.
Taking good care of your oral health also involves keeping your saliva up and running. Stay hydrated, chew your food well, and monitor your medications. As always, please contact us if you have any questions about keeping your smile healthy! 718-224-4000