Excessive Salivation

About Excessive Salivation

Excessive salivation isn’t that big of a deal but it can be a sign of other problems—especially in children.  Excessive salivation usually occurs when too factors come into the play simultaneously.  First, the sufferer tends to produce more saliva than other individuals do.  Second, the sufferer tends to have a harder time swallowing saliva, either because they don’t swallow often enough or because when they do swallow, they do not take in enough saliva.  Thus, the person who suffers from this condition will tend to drool, or slobber.

Furthermore, if a person suffers from excessive salivation, they may experience other problems related to the condition, such as sore throats.  Occasionally, a person who has excessive salivation will also tend to get saliva in the lungs, which may cause them to cough.

So what can a person do if they have excessive salivation?

Improve Oral Hygiene

One of the possible causes of excessive salivation is poor oral hygiene.  When the body perceives there are more bacteria in the mouth than normal, one of the reactions can be to produce extra saliva in order to help cope with this problem.  It is as if the body was a city where there are many litter bugs, making the city feel that it needs to wash the streets more often than it normally would.

Because poor oral hygiene can cause extra saliva to be created, the obvious solution is to improve dental care.  A person might increase the number of times they brush and floss their teeth, for example.  Rather than just brushing their teeth twice a day, a person might begin brushing his or her teeth after every meal.  Frequency sometimes is not the only cause of poor oral hygiene, however.  Sometimes a person is simply not brushing correctly.  Food bits can get caught not only between teeth and in cavities but also at the point where the gums meet the teeth, just under the soft folds of the gums.  In order to dislodge these bacteria producers, a person needs to be especially careful to brush at an angle so the bristles of the brush penetrate these tight areas and force the food scraps out.  This method of eradication will not only have a positive effect on the amount of saliva the mouth produces but also on overall gum health.

A person should also floss or increase the frequency of flossing.  Food doesn’t just get caught along the gum line, but also between teeth.  A toothbrush can reach many of these spots but simply is not equal to the task of dislodging the cavity causers that ensconce themselves between your pearly whites.  In addition, the process of flossing will pull the gums back making it easier to remove food bits that have hidden there and adding to the general flexibility of the gums.

Finally, oral hygiene should also involve your dentist.  Regular cleanings and office visits can help to maintain oral health.  In addition, open communication with your dentist about your saliva problem may prove to be the best form of treatment as you dentist may have helpful advice and treatments for your condition.


Increased Swallowing

The other treatment for reducing saliva is consciously to train yourself to swallow at a higher frequency.  Often a sore throat or some other sort of throat discomfort may keep a person from swallowing his or her saliva at a regular rate.  However, you can train yourself to swallow more frequently to the point where such swallowing becomes a habit that you barely have to consciously devote attention to address.  Often this goal is best achieved through the aid of a trained behavior therapist.  You should seek a referral from your dentist.