Saliva plays an import role in keeping your mouth healthy, it protects teeth from decay, helps heal sores in your mouth, and prevents infection by controlling bacteria, viruses, and fungi.
As we get older many of us start to suffer from a dry mouth, and left untreated, it can lead to oral thrush, tooth decay and gum disease.
Dry mouth can be caused be many factors, often dehydration, but it can also be caused by an underlying problem or medical condition. Over 400 medications can cause a dry mouth, including antihistamines, anti-depressants and diuretics - so always check the leaflet which comes with your medicine. Other common causes of dry mouth include a blocked nose, diabetes, radiotherapy and Sjögren's syndrome.
There are preventative measures however; chewing sugar free gum is a great way to prevent dry mouth. You can also get artificial saliva products that resemble naturally-produced saliva and are available as sprays, swabs and solutions in a variety of flavours.