12 conditions that cause dry mouth

Summer time makes most our mouths go dry. You may feel a dry mouth after a long run. A high body temperature during fever will want you to take more liquids. The reason for dry mouth are many. Some of them are due to everyday activities. But sometimes dry mouth can be due to a underlying disease. Let’s find out the causes of dry mouth


Salivary flow  is decreased during sleep, which may lead to a temporary sensation of dry mouth upon waking. This disappears with eating or drinking or with oral hygiene. When associated with halitosis, this is sometimes termed “morning breath”. Dry mouth is also a common sensation during periods of anxiety.

Drug induced

Over 400 medicines cause dry mouth. Although the dryness caused by the medicines is reversible, the conditions for which they are prescribed are chronic.The sensation of dryness usually starts shortly after starting the offending medication or after increasing the dose.

Sjögren’s syndrome

Autoimmune conditions which damage saliva-producing cells can cause dry mouth. Sjögren’s syndrome is one such disease, and it is associated with  fatigue, muscle pain, joint pain. The disease causes reduced secretions from glands that produce saliva, tears and other secretions throughout the body.

Celiac disease

Xerostomia may be the only symptom of celiac disease, especially in adults, who often have no obvious digestive symptoms.

Radiation therapy

Radiation therapy for cancers of the head and neck  where the salivary glands are close to or within the field irradiated is another major cause of dry mouth.

Sicca syndrome

“Sicca” simply means dryness. Sicca syndrome is not a specific condition, and there are varying definitions, but the term can describe oral and eye dryness that is not caused by autoimmune diseases (e.g., Sjögren syndrome).


Alcohol may be involved in the cause of salivary gland disease, liver disease, or dehydration.


Smoking is another possible reason for dry mouth. Other recreational drugs also may be implicated.

Hormonal disorders

Hormonal disorders, such as poorly controlled diabetes.


Low fluid intake in people undergoing dialysis  may also result in dry mouth, due to dehydration.

Hepatitis C

Xerostomia may be a consequence of infection with hepatitis C virus (HCV)

HIV Infection

Infection with Human Immunodeficiency Virus/Acquired immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS) can cause a related salivary gland disease known as Diffuse Infiltrative Lymphocytosis Syndrome (DILS).


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