The City Mattress Blog

sleep tips

How to Prevent Dry Mouth While Sleeping


Woman laying in bed in night gown reaches for a glass of water on nightstand to counter dry mouth while sleeping

Dry mouth is much more than just a dry, scratchy feeling in your mouth and throat. It can be incredibly uncomfortable and embarrassing. Do you wake in the middle of the night with a sore throat? Do you need a drink of water as soon as you wake up in the morning? Do you find you have bad breath even though you are brushing, flossing, and using mouthwash at least once a day? If you answered yes to any of these questions, it is quite possible that you are one of the millions of people who are waking up with dry mouth. Dry mouth, the common term for the condition Xerostomia, refers to when a person’s salivary glands in their mouth don't make enough saliva to keep their mouth wet. More often than not, this is most uncomfortable at night. 

What is Causing the Dry Mouth?

In order to know how to best solve your dry mouth, you must first understand what is causing it in the first place. This annoying condition can have several different underlying causes. Dry mouth can be due to certain health conditions, such as Diabetes, a past stroke, Alzheimer's disease, or due to autoimmune diseases, such as Sjogren's syndrome or HIV/AIDS. Snoring and breathing with your mouth open also can contribute to dry mouth. Excessive tobacco and alcohol use can cause this as well.

It makes sense that dry mouth would afflict you most often at night. During the day, you can drink liquids to keep your mouth wet. At night, if you’re sleeping the seven to eight hours you are supposed to, you are going a very long time without adding any liquid to your mouth. When you wake up, your mouth is very dry!

How to Prevent Dry Mouth While Sleeping

Decreased saliva and dry mouth can range from being merely a nuisance to something that has a major impact on your general health and the health of your teeth and gums. If you’re suffering from dry mouth, it’s time to do something about it! If you’re drinking alcohol or smoking before bed, stop this. Beyond breaking these bad habits, there are a number of solutions that can help you avoid dry mouth at night:

  • Remain hydrated throughout the day by drinking plenty of water.
  • Use a fluoride toothpaste and mouthwash made for people with dry mouth.
  • Avoid spicy and acidic foods before bed.
  • Speak to your pharmacist about prescription and over the counter medications you take. Learn more about side effects and potentially make changes to your medications if dry mouth persists. 

Obstructive Sleep Apnea and Dry Mouth

As briefly mentioned above, snoring and breathing with your mouth open is a cause of dry mouth. This means sufferers of Obstructive Sleep Apnea often deal with this condition because they are breathing through their open mouth all night long. Altering your sleep position can reduce Sleep Apnea symptoms and improve your night. Many people who suffer from dry mouth due to Obstructive Sleep Apnea don’t need fancy medical equipment, they simply need to set up their bed in a way that enables them to open their airway and breath more openly. Raising your upper torso can open your airways. This may mean a new mattress where you don’t “sink down” too far. In addition to a well-made, supportive mattress, you’ll also want to look into the right pillows that elevate your head as well as adjustable bed bases.

If you have been prescribed a CPAP machine because of dry mouth and Sleep Apnea, we carry special pillows made especially to enable you to sleep well while wearing your mask. You can eliminate discomfort and reduce mask interference with the uniquely supportive shape of the Borden Textile CPAP Support Pillow. This therapeutic support pillow adequately aids in keeping the CPAP hose clear with specially-designed contoured side cutouts. Assisting in the proper neck and spinal alignment, a dimple at the center cradles the neck, head, and shoulders to relieve pressure points and optimize your airway throughout the night. You’ll sleep deeply and wake up without dry mouth!

Come into your nearest City Mattress and find the right sleep essentials to improve your night of sleep. If your dry mouth is caused by sleeping with your mouth open, we’ll find you a supportive pillow, a new mattress, and an adjustable bed base that creates a true slumber oasis.