How To Treat Thick Saliva

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How To Treat Thick Saliva
Good mouth care and frequent sips of water are helpful ways to manage problems with dry mouth or thick saliva. Avoiding alcohol intake and tobacco, avoiding certain foods, and keeping caffeine and sugar (in candy, gum, or soft drinks) to a minimum can help keep a dry mouth and thick saliva from getting worse.

How can I make my thick saliva thinner?

Drink at least 8 to 10 cups of fluid to help prevent dehydration and help thin saliva. Drink warm fluids to help clear your mouth of thick saliva and to help ‘wash’ food down. Rinse your mouth and gargle with club soda or baking soda rinse (1/4 tsp baking soda mixed with 1 cup water) before and after eating.

What causes saliva to thicken?

What Causes Sticky Saliva? – There are many potential causes of sticky saliva. Some of the most common include: Dry mouth: Dry mouth, also known as xerostomia, is a condition in which the mouth does not produce enough saliva. This can be due to medications, medical conditions, or simply not drinking enough fluids.

  • Dry mouth can also cause thick and sticky saliva.
  • Dehydration: It occurs when the body does not have enough fluids.
  • This can happen if you are sick, sweating excessively, or not drinking enough fluids.
  • Dehydration can cause the saliva to become sticky.
  • Smoking: Smokers often complain of having a sticky mouth.

This is because smoking causes the saliva to thicken, making it difficult to swallow. The sticky saliva can adhere to teeth and gums, promoting the growth of bacteria. As a result, smokers are at an increased risk of developing gum disease and other oral health problems.

While quitting smoking is the best way to reduce these risks, there are also some things that smokers can do to help keep their mouths healthy. For example, brushing and flossing regularly can help remove plaque build-up, and using a tongue scraper can help remove bacteria from the tongue. Diet: Do you ever feel like your saliva is just too sticky? You’re not alone.

Studies have shown that diet can affect the stickiness of saliva. Consuming foods high in sugar and starch can make saliva more adhesive, leading to problems with dental health and difficulty swallowing. Oral hygiene: Poor oral hygiene can lead to bacteria build-up in the mouth, making the saliva thick and sticky.

  1. This can lead to tooth decay and gum disease.
  2. Poor oral hygiene can also cause bad breath.
  3. Halitosis (bad breath) is caused by bacteria in the mouth, which release sulfur compounds with a characteristic odor.
  4. Medical conditions: A diverse range of conditions can cause changes in the composition of saliva, resulting in a sticky or thicker consistency.

While this may not seem like a big deal, it can be quite uncomfortable and lead to other problems such as difficulty swallowing. Some medical conditions that can cause sticky saliva include dehydration, Sjogren’s syndrome, and diabetes. In most cases, changes in saliva consistency are temporary and can be resolved with treatment.

What medication is used to thin thick saliva?

Use over-the-counter medicines to help thin your saliva, such as Mucinex or Robitussin. It is important to drink plenty of water when you take these medicines.

How can I make my saliva more watery?

What can I do at home to treat dry mouth? – Oral hygiene is essential if you have a dry mouth. Brush your teeth twice a day, and use mouthwash. Doing so will help prevent tooth decay. Cavities and decay are more common for people with dry mouth. It’s also important to promote saliva production.

Ice cubes or sugar-free ice pops. Sugar-free hard candy or sugarless gum that contains xylitol. Water or other sugarless fluids, sipped frequently throughout the day.

These products may also help:

Artificial saliva products to help you produce more saliva. These products are often available over-the-counter as a rinse or spray. Toothpastes and mouthwashes specially made for dry mouth. Lip balm. Cool-mist humidifier, especially if you breathe through your mouth at night.

Try to avoid:

Acidic, spicy, salty, dry and sugary foods and beverages. Alcohol, caffeine and carbonated drinks. Mouthwashes with alcohol or peroxide, which may dry your mouth even more. Smoking.

Why does my mouth keep filling up with saliva?

Salivating a lot can occur temporarily with some health conditions like cavities and then go away as the infection resolves. If it’s caused by a chronic condition, treatment may involve medication or other therapy. In hypersalivation, your salivary glands produce more saliva than usual.

  • If the extra saliva begins to accumulate, it may begin to drip out of your mouth unintentionally.
  • In older children and adults, drooling may be a sign of an underlying condition.
  • Hypersalivation may be temporary or chronic depending on the cause.
  • For example, if you’re dealing with an infection, your mouth may produce more saliva to help flush out the bacteria.

Hypersalivation usually stops once the infection has been successfully treated. Constant hypersalivation (sialorrhea) often relates back to an underlying condition that affects muscle control. This may be a sign preceding diagnosis or a symptom that develops later on.

cavitiesinfectiongastroesophageal refluxpregnancycertain tranquilizers and anticonvulsant drugsexposure to toxins, such as mercury

In these cases, hypersalivation typically goes away after treating the underlying condition. Women who are pregnant typically see a decrease in symptoms after childbirth. Wondering what other symptoms you may experience during pregnancy? Look no further.

malocclusion enlarged tongueintellectual disability cerebral palsy facial nerve palsy Parkinson’s disease amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) stroke

When the cause is chronic, symptom management is key. If left untreated, hypersalivation can affect your ability to speak clearly or swallow food and drink without choking. Your doctor may be able to diagnose hypersalivation after discussing your symptoms.

swellingbleedinginflammationfoul odor

If you’ve already been diagnosed with a chronic condition, your doctor may use a scale system to assess how severe your sialorrhea is. This can help your doctor determine which treatment options may be right for you. Your treatment plan will vary depending on the underlying cause.

How long does thick saliva last?

Thick saliva may begin during the first one to two weeks of radiation. Partial recovery of salivary gland function has been observed to occur as early as 2-6 months after cessation of treatment but may persist for more than five years.

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What foods reduce mucus in the throat?

We include products we think are useful for our readers. If you buy through links on this page, we may earn a small commission Here’s our process, Healthline only shows you brands and products that we stand behind. Our team thoroughly researches and evaluates the recommendations we make on our site. To establish that the product manufacturers addressed safety and efficacy standards, we:

  • Evaluate ingredients and composition: Do they have the potential to cause harm?
  • Fact-check all health claims: Do they align with the current body of scientific evidence?
  • Assess the brand: Does it operate with integrity and adhere to industry best practices?

We do the research so you can find trusted products for your health and wellness. Certain remedies, such as staying hydrated, using a humidifer, and taking over-the-counter decongestants can all help ease excess phlegm in your throat or chest. Phlegm is that thick, sticky stuff that hangs around in the back of your throat when you’re sick.

  • mouth
  • nose
  • throat
  • sinuses
  • lungs

Mucus is sticky so it can trap dust, allergens, and viruses. When you’re healthy, the mucus is thin and less noticeable. When you’re sick or exposed to too many particles, the phlegm can get thick and become more noticeable as it traps these foreign substances.

Phlegm is a healthy part of your respiratory system, but if it’s making you uncomfortable, there are ways to thin it or reduce it. Keep reading to learn about some natural remedies, over-the-counter (OTC) medicines, and when you may want to see your doctor. Moisturizing the air around you can help keep mucus thin.

You may have heard that steam can clear phlegm and congestion, but there isn’t a lot of scientific support for this idea. Instead of steam, you can use a cool mist humidifier. You can run this humidifier safely all day long. You’ll just want to make sure you change the water each day and clean your humidifier according to the package instructions.

  • Drinking enough liquids, especially warm ones can help with mucus flow.
  • Water and other liquids can loosen your congestion by helping your mucus move.
  • Try sipping liquids, like juice, clear broths, and soup.
  • Other good liquid choices include decaffeinated tea, warm fruit juice, and lemon water.
  • Your drinks shouldn’t be the only thing that’s warm.

You should be, too! Staying warm is an easy home remedy to soothe your respiratory system. That’s because you’re better able to fight off conditions that cause excess mucus (like the common cold) when you’re at a warmer body temperature, Methods to stay warm include:

  • warm showers
  • wearing warmer clothing to fend off cold temperatures
  • cuddling up in bed with an extra blanket

Try consuming foods and drinks that contain lemon, ginger, and garlic, A 2018 survey found these may help treat colds, coughs, and excess mucus, though there isn’t much research to back it up. Spicy foods that contain capsaicin, such as cayenne or chili peppers, might also help temporarily clear sinuses and get mucus moving.

  • licorice root
  • ginseng
  • berries
  • echinacea
  • pomegranate

You might also be wondering about the classic many grab when they’re sick: chicken soup. Does it help get rid of phlegm too? Some research suggests yes. Chicken soup might be good for treating colds and getting rid of excess mucus. This is because chicken soup slows neutrophils’ movement in your body.

  1. Neutrophils, a type of white blood cell, fight off infection.
  2. When moving slowly, they stay in the areas of your body where infection exists for longer.
  3. Overall, more studies are needed to confirm the effects of these foods, but for most people, adding these ingredients to their diet is safe to try.
  4. If you’re taking any prescription medications, ask your doctor before adding any new ingredients to your diet.

Gargling warm salt water may help clear phlegm in the back of your throat. It may even help soothe a sore throat. When gargling salt water, follow these easy steps:

  1. Mix together a cup of water with 1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon of salt. Warm water works best, because it dissolves the salt more quickly. It’s also a good idea to use filtered or bottled water that doesn’t contain irritating chlorine.
  2. Sip a bit of the mixture and tilt your head back slightly.
  3. Let the mixture wash into your throat without drinking it.
  4. Gently blow air up from your lungs to gargle for 30 to 60 seconds, and then spit out the water.
  5. Repeat as needed.

If you don’t want to gargle salt water, there’s an easier, more effective alternative to thin phlegm: saline, Saline is a salt water solution you can use as a nasal spray or in a neti pot, It’s available over the counter and is a natural way to clear out the sinuses.

  • Research from 2018 supports the idea that mucus thins out after consistently using a saline solution for longer than a week.
  • Using eucalyptus essential oil may help reduce excess mucus in your chest.
  • It works by loosening the mucus so you can cough it out more easily.
  • At the same time, if you have a nagging cough, the eucalyptus may relieve it.

You can either inhale the vapor by using a diffuser or use a balm that contains this ingredient. While research suggests there are health benefits, the FDA doesn’t monitor or regulate the purity or quality of essential oils. It’s important to talk with a healthcare professional before you begin using essential oils and be sure to research the quality of a brand’s products.

Always do a patch test before trying a new essential oil. There are also OTC medicines you can use. Decongestants, for example, can cut down the mucus that flows from your nose. This mucus isn’t considered phlegm, but it can lead to chest congestion. Decongestants work by reducing swelling in your nose and opening up your airways.

You can find oral decongestants in the form of:

  • tablets or capsules
  • liquids or syrups
  • flavored powders

There are also many decongestant nasal sprays on the market. You can try products like guaifenesin ( Mucinex ) that thin mucus so it won’t sit in the back of your throat or your chest. This type of medication is called an expectorant, which means it helps you to expel mucus by thinning and loosening it.

  1. This OTC treatment usually lasts for 12 hours, but you should follow the package instructions.
  2. There are children’s versions for kids ages 4 and older.
  3. Chest rubs, like Vicks VapoRub, contain eucalyptus oil to ease coughs and potentially get rid of mucus.
  4. You can rub it onto your chest and neck up to three times each day.

Younger children should not use Vicks at its full strength, but the company does make a baby-strength version. If you have certain conditions or infections, your doctor may prescribe medications to treat the root cause of your symptoms. There are specific medications that can thin your mucus if you have a chronic lung condition, like cystic fibrosis,

  • cough
  • sore throat
  • chest tightness
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Dornase-Alfa (Pulmozyme) is a mucus-thinning medication often used by people with cystic fibrosis. You inhale it through a nebulizer. It’s also suitable for people ages 6 and up. You may lose your voice or develop a rash while on this medication. Other side effects include:

  • throat discomfort
  • fever
  • dizziness
  • runny nose

Excess or thick phlegm from time to time is usually not a reason for concern. You may notice it in the morning because it’s accumulated and dried overnight. You may also notice phlegm more if you’re sick, have seasonal allergies, or if you’re dehydrated,

  • acid reflux
  • allergies
  • asthma
  • cystic fibrosis (although this condition is usually diagnosed early in life)
  • chronic bronchitis
  • other lung diseases

Contact your doctor if your phlegm has been bothering you for a month or longer, Let your doctor know if you have other symptoms, like:

  • coughing up blood
  • chest pain
  • shortness of breath
  • wheezing

It’s important to remember that the body produces mucus at all times. When you notice excess mucus, it’s typically a sign your body is fighting off a cold, allergies, or something more serious. There are many medicines and remedies tailored to different severity levels and preferences.

OTC medication and at-home remedies are great places to start. While many home remedies don’t have a large body of research on their effectiveness, they typically aren’t harmful to most people. OTC saline solutions and medications, on the other hand, have been researched and found effective in many cases.

Severe cases of excess mucus can usually be treated with prescribed medication. While excess mucus can often be treated at home, contact your doctor if:

  • you’re concerned by how much phlegm you have
  • the amount of phlegm has dramatically increased
  • you have other symptoms that worry you

What foods cause excess saliva?

3. Results – The aim of this study was to clarify whether sour and/or carbonated foods and drinks had subsequent impacts on swallowing function. The results are presented in this section and are discussed in relation to previous studies in the following section.

Is thick saliva serious?

The glands that make saliva can become irritated or damaged and make less saliva, or your saliva can become very thick and sticky. The level of dryness can be mild or severe. Having a dry mouth or thick saliva can increase your risk of cavities and mouth infection.

Does your saliva thicken as you age?

Abstract – Although xerostomia is associated with aging, studies have determined that salivary gland function is well preserved in the healthy geriatric population. Therefore, dry mouth is probably not a condition of aging, but most likely one of systemic or extrinsic origin.

Saliva seems to undergo chemical changes with aging. As the amount of ptyalin decreases and mucin increases, saliva can become thick and viscous and present problems for the elderly. One of the most prevalent causes of xerostomia is medication. Anticholinergics, such as psychotropic agents and antihistamines, and diuretics can dry the oral mucosa.

Chronic mouth breathing, radiation therapy, dehydration, and autoimmune diseases, such as Sjögren’s, can also diminish salivation, as can systemic illness such as diabetes mellitus, nephritis, and thyroid dysfunction. Xerostomia can lead to dysgeusia, glossodynia, sialadenitis, cracking and fissuring of the oral mucosa, and halitosis.

Why is my saliva so thick and foamy?

Foamy spit is usually the result of dry mouth. Dry mouth could be a short-term response to conditions like: Dehydration. Stress.

Can excess saliva be treated?

How is Excessive Drooling Traditionally Treated? – Treatment options center around medical and surgical therapies to diminish the amount of saliva present in the mouth. Approximately 1 liter of saliva is produced each day primarily by three salivary glands on either side of the mouth: the parotid glands, the submandibular glands, and the sublingual glands.

Is it better to have thick or thin saliva?

Is Sticky or Thick Saliva a Problem? – Having sticky saliva can be uncomfortable. Your mouth may feel full of mucus, or you may find it difficult to swallow. Along with discomfort, thicker saliva can contribute to other problems in your mouth. When saliva is thin and free-flowing, it’s able to do its job of washing bacteria from your teeth, which reduces your risk of gum disease or other infections.

Can stress and anxiety cause excess saliva?

While anxiety is often associated with dry mouth (xerostomia), anxiety can also be a contributing factor for excessive saliva, drooling, and squirting.

Does lemon increase saliva?

Fresh lemon juice – The highly acidic properties of a lemon are known to increase saliva production and the antioxidants in the lemon can even help repair any damaged tissue in your mouth. Just be mindful of how often you use this remedy because the acid in lemons is also very good at dissolving enamel surfaces.

Does drinking more water reduce saliva?

Increases Saliva Production – Saliva helps curb bacteria production on the surface of your teeth. It also contains enzymes that help you break down and better digest your food. When you don’t produce enough saliva, you run the risk of developing dry mouth, which encourages bacteria overgrowth and can even lead to discomfort, bad breath, and gum disease.

Why is my saliva so thick and foamy?

Foamy spit is usually the result of dry mouth. Dry mouth could be a short-term response to conditions like: Dehydration. Stress.

What drinks get rid of mucus in the body?

We include products we think are useful for our readers. If you buy through links on this page, we may earn a small commission Here’s our process, Healthline only shows you brands and products that we stand behind. Our team thoroughly researches and evaluates the recommendations we make on our site. To establish that the product manufacturers addressed safety and efficacy standards, we:

  • Evaluate ingredients and composition: Do they have the potential to cause harm?
  • Fact-check all health claims: Do they align with the current body of scientific evidence?
  • Assess the brand: Does it operate with integrity and adhere to industry best practices?

We do the research so you can find trusted products for your health and wellness. Certain remedies, such as staying hydrated, using a humidifer, and taking over-the-counter decongestants can all help ease excess phlegm in your throat or chest. Phlegm is that thick, sticky stuff that hangs around in the back of your throat when you’re sick.

  • mouth
  • nose
  • throat
  • sinuses
  • lungs

Mucus is sticky so it can trap dust, allergens, and viruses. When you’re healthy, the mucus is thin and less noticeable. When you’re sick or exposed to too many particles, the phlegm can get thick and become more noticeable as it traps these foreign substances.

  1. Phlegm is a healthy part of your respiratory system, but if it’s making you uncomfortable, there are ways to thin it or reduce it.
  2. Eep reading to learn about some natural remedies, over-the-counter (OTC) medicines, and when you may want to see your doctor.
  3. Moisturizing the air around you can help keep mucus thin.

You may have heard that steam can clear phlegm and congestion, but there isn’t a lot of scientific support for this idea. Instead of steam, you can use a cool mist humidifier. You can run this humidifier safely all day long. You’ll just want to make sure you change the water each day and clean your humidifier according to the package instructions.

  1. Drinking enough liquids, especially warm ones can help with mucus flow.
  2. Water and other liquids can loosen your congestion by helping your mucus move.
  3. Try sipping liquids, like juice, clear broths, and soup.
  4. Other good liquid choices include decaffeinated tea, warm fruit juice, and lemon water.
  5. Your drinks shouldn’t be the only thing that’s warm.
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You should be, too! Staying warm is an easy home remedy to soothe your respiratory system. That’s because you’re better able to fight off conditions that cause excess mucus (like the common cold) when you’re at a warmer body temperature, Methods to stay warm include:

  • warm showers
  • wearing warmer clothing to fend off cold temperatures
  • cuddling up in bed with an extra blanket

Try consuming foods and drinks that contain lemon, ginger, and garlic, A 2018 survey found these may help treat colds, coughs, and excess mucus, though there isn’t much research to back it up. Spicy foods that contain capsaicin, such as cayenne or chili peppers, might also help temporarily clear sinuses and get mucus moving.

  • licorice root
  • ginseng
  • berries
  • echinacea
  • pomegranate

You might also be wondering about the classic many grab when they’re sick: chicken soup. Does it help get rid of phlegm too? Some research suggests yes. Chicken soup might be good for treating colds and getting rid of excess mucus. This is because chicken soup slows neutrophils’ movement in your body.

  • Neutrophils, a type of white blood cell, fight off infection.
  • When moving slowly, they stay in the areas of your body where infection exists for longer.
  • Overall, more studies are needed to confirm the effects of these foods, but for most people, adding these ingredients to their diet is safe to try.
  • If you’re taking any prescription medications, ask your doctor before adding any new ingredients to your diet.

Gargling warm salt water may help clear phlegm in the back of your throat. It may even help soothe a sore throat. When gargling salt water, follow these easy steps:

  1. Mix together a cup of water with 1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon of salt. Warm water works best, because it dissolves the salt more quickly. It’s also a good idea to use filtered or bottled water that doesn’t contain irritating chlorine.
  2. Sip a bit of the mixture and tilt your head back slightly.
  3. Let the mixture wash into your throat without drinking it.
  4. Gently blow air up from your lungs to gargle for 30 to 60 seconds, and then spit out the water.
  5. Repeat as needed.

If you don’t want to gargle salt water, there’s an easier, more effective alternative to thin phlegm: saline, Saline is a salt water solution you can use as a nasal spray or in a neti pot, It’s available over the counter and is a natural way to clear out the sinuses.

  • Research from 2018 supports the idea that mucus thins out after consistently using a saline solution for longer than a week.
  • Using eucalyptus essential oil may help reduce excess mucus in your chest.
  • It works by loosening the mucus so you can cough it out more easily.
  • At the same time, if you have a nagging cough, the eucalyptus may relieve it.

You can either inhale the vapor by using a diffuser or use a balm that contains this ingredient. While research suggests there are health benefits, the FDA doesn’t monitor or regulate the purity or quality of essential oils. It’s important to talk with a healthcare professional before you begin using essential oils and be sure to research the quality of a brand’s products.

Always do a patch test before trying a new essential oil. There are also OTC medicines you can use. Decongestants, for example, can cut down the mucus that flows from your nose. This mucus isn’t considered phlegm, but it can lead to chest congestion. Decongestants work by reducing swelling in your nose and opening up your airways.

You can find oral decongestants in the form of:

  • tablets or capsules
  • liquids or syrups
  • flavored powders

There are also many decongestant nasal sprays on the market. You can try products like guaifenesin ( Mucinex ) that thin mucus so it won’t sit in the back of your throat or your chest. This type of medication is called an expectorant, which means it helps you to expel mucus by thinning and loosening it.

  1. This OTC treatment usually lasts for 12 hours, but you should follow the package instructions.
  2. There are children’s versions for kids ages 4 and older.
  3. Chest rubs, like Vicks VapoRub, contain eucalyptus oil to ease coughs and potentially get rid of mucus.
  4. You can rub it onto your chest and neck up to three times each day.

Younger children should not use Vicks at its full strength, but the company does make a baby-strength version. If you have certain conditions or infections, your doctor may prescribe medications to treat the root cause of your symptoms. There are specific medications that can thin your mucus if you have a chronic lung condition, like cystic fibrosis,

  • cough
  • sore throat
  • chest tightness

Dornase-Alfa (Pulmozyme) is a mucus-thinning medication often used by people with cystic fibrosis. You inhale it through a nebulizer. It’s also suitable for people ages 6 and up. You may lose your voice or develop a rash while on this medication. Other side effects include:

  • throat discomfort
  • fever
  • dizziness
  • runny nose

Excess or thick phlegm from time to time is usually not a reason for concern. You may notice it in the morning because it’s accumulated and dried overnight. You may also notice phlegm more if you’re sick, have seasonal allergies, or if you’re dehydrated,

  • acid reflux
  • allergies
  • asthma
  • cystic fibrosis (although this condition is usually diagnosed early in life)
  • chronic bronchitis
  • other lung diseases

Contact your doctor if your phlegm has been bothering you for a month or longer, Let your doctor know if you have other symptoms, like:

  • coughing up blood
  • chest pain
  • shortness of breath
  • wheezing

It’s important to remember that the body produces mucus at all times. When you notice excess mucus, it’s typically a sign your body is fighting off a cold, allergies, or something more serious. There are many medicines and remedies tailored to different severity levels and preferences.

  • OTC medication and at-home remedies are great places to start.
  • While many home remedies don’t have a large body of research on their effectiveness, they typically aren’t harmful to most people.
  • OTC saline solutions and medications, on the other hand, have been researched and found effective in many cases.

Severe cases of excess mucus can usually be treated with prescribed medication. While excess mucus can often be treated at home, contact your doctor if:

  • you’re concerned by how much phlegm you have
  • the amount of phlegm has dramatically increased
  • you have other symptoms that worry you