However, there's much we don't understand about the connection between medications and dry mouth in older adults. Recently, researchers examined 52 related studies to learn more.
‘Side effects of certain medication generally prescribed to the elderly for various conditions can be a cause of concern as they can lead to problems with chewing, eating, swallowing and also put them at a higher risk for tooth decay or oral infections’
The researchers reported that there are a number of medications that are linked to dry mouth. These include medications used to treat urinary incontinence, depression, insomnia, and anxiety, as well as diuretics used to treat high blood pressure.
In fact, medications used to treat urinary incontinence were nearly six times more likely to cause dry mouth than a placebo. (A placebo is a "sugar pill" or "dummy" treatment that is given in research studies to compare effects of an actual treatment compared to no treatment at all).
The researchers suggested that health care providers should regularly monitor and review all medications to identify potential side effects and to adjust doses or change medications when necessary.