Drool Away: The Importance of Saliva

Drinking WaterNot generally considered a pleasant topic of conversation, saliva is nonetheless a vital element of your health and well-being – especially where your mouth is concerned. Composed primarily of H2O, saliva also contains glycoproteins, antibacterial compounds, electrolytes, mucous, and enzymes. Saliva is secreted from several different glands which are located throughout the mouth. This bodily fluid may seem impolite culturally, but saliva contributes to a wide range of bodily functions.

Salivary Benefits

Probably one of the most important functions of saliva is the way it aids in your ability to comfortably and safely swallow food. Have you ever tried to eat a peanut butter sandwich with a dry mouth? Without saliva, your sandwich (or anything you eat) could end up stuck dangerously in your throat. Food which is unable to move down the esophagus will result in potential choking. Saliva coats your esophagus, making food much easier to swallow. Furthermore, many of the molecules which comprise your food require moisture in order to be actually tasted. Salivary output also provides the first step in your food digestion process by aiding in the initial breakdown of starchy consumables.

Saliva and Oral Health

Saliva is sort of like a shower for your mouth. The liquid possesses antibacterial and mouth-cleaning properties to get rid of food debris hanging out between meals and feeding bacteria. The constant flow of saliva through the mouth washes away germs which cause bad breath as well. Saliva also controls the growth of a wide variety of germs in your mouth, helping it maintain a healthy oral ecosystem. When your mouth becomes dry during sleep or when you take certain medications, some germs will grow out of control. This can lead to a range of oral health problems, including increased instances of tooth decay. If you have dry mouth, check in with the Moreno Valley dentists about possible treatment options.

Visit your Moreno Valley Dentists

Call the Dental Associates of Moreno Valley for a consultation if you feel that dry mouth may be causing bad breath or other oral health problems. Only your dentist can determine for sure.  Call (951) 697-6800 today to schedule your appointment.