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Dry mouth (xerostomia and hypofunction)
Published on February 28, 2017 31 min
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- Prof. Palle Holmstrup
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This is Mike Brennan, I am Professor and Chair at the department of Oral Medicine at Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte, North Carolina. Today, I'm going to talk about "Dry Mouth".
The objectives for today's lecture are first, to define and describe the different causes of dry mouth. Second, is to define and describe how to diagnose dry mouth. Third, define and describe the oral manifestations of dry mouth. And lastly, we'll describe management strategies for dry mouth.
When we talk about the production of saliva, the healthy adult produces approximately 1.5 liters of saliva in 24 hours. The saliva comes from three major pairs of salivary glands: the parotid gland, the submandibular gland, and the sublingual gland. In addition to these three major salivary glands, there are numerous minor salivary glands, approximately 750. They are located all throughout the mouth, except for the gingiva and the anterior hard palate.
This current slide represents the location of the major salivary glands. As you can see, we have the parotid gland, underneath at the jaw is the submandibular gland, and little bit further anterior to that, is the sublingual gland.
Approximately 45% of the saliva is produced by the parotids and another 45% from the submandibular glands. The remaining saliva is produced by the sublingual glands and the minor salivary glands. The sublingual and minor salivary glands produce more of a thicker type of mucous secretion. Whereas, the parotid gland produces a more watery type of saliva. And the submandibular gland is more of a watery and a thick mucous type secretion. When we talk about the amount of saliva, salivary hypofunction or low salivary output is described as, the unstimulated whole salivary flow at less than 1.5 ml in 15 minutes; and the stimulated whole salivary flow at less than 10.5 ml in 15 minutes, with the use of this diagnostic test.