All About Saliva: General Dentistry in Seattle
It’s in every mouth we know of. Sometimes it is in great abundance, sometimes it is not. It is that complex substance known as saliva. At Advanced Cosmetic Implant & Laser Dentistry in Seattle, we know saliva has a poor reputation. But we also know how important it is to general dentistry, and to oral health.
Saliva is a finely balance fluid produced by several glands, and it is important to a healthy body. It is made mostly of water. No surprise there. Here are its other components:
- Enzymes. Enzymes are essential biological catalysts that speed chemical reactions. The enzymes in saliva begin the process of digestion.
- Immunoproteins. These are dynamic cells that fight cellular invaders, such as bacteria. Those in saliva inhibit the overgrowth of microbes in the mouth. This is essential to avoiding gingivitis and keeping a healthy pH balance in the mouth.
- Minerals. Saliva minerals assist in maintaining the protective enamel surface of the teeth.
Most of us produce enough saliva, but some suffer from a condition called xerostomia, or dry mouth. This is a lack of saliva. Dry mouth can be harmful to your dental health, because germs can thrive in that environment. The gums, tongue, and other tissues can get swollen and uncomfortable. If you have dry mouth, or even think you might, be sure to let us know.
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