Parkinson's disease, gastroesophageal reflux, tooth and gum problems: this episode of "Daily Health Pills" explains the causes of drooling
There are many causes of sialorrhea, i.e. the excessive production of saliva, especially at night. Only the doctor or dentist can be exhaustive in identifying the specific reason. However, general assumptions can be made.
Causes of drooling: nervous system and Parkinson's disease
Under normal conditions we produce about 2 liters of saliva per day, physiologically we swallow it. An excess of saliva production, especially in old age and in the absence of injuries and pathologies that can justify this symptom, can be linked primarily to alterations of the parasympathetic nervous system.
This particular function of the nervous system also has that of innervating the glands that produce saliva, called salivaries, which due to these alterations tend to produce an excessive amount of saliva.
A typical example of this particular situation and of the role of the nervous system is linked to Parkinson's disease which sees sialorrhea in some cases as a very common disorder that is obviously also linked to the slowing down of the swallowing limbs.
Causes of drooling: gastroesophageal reflux
But beware, there may also be more common conditions, for example linked to problems with the teeth and gums. Or simply a dental prosthesis that does not suit the structure of the mouth.
The same problem can be observed in cases of respiratory tract disorders, in the form of inflammations or infections that attack the throat, or even in people suffering from gastroesophageal reflux. This is the most important and widespread disease related to the production of gastric acid. The prevalence of the disease increases in the age groups above 45-50 years and it is no coincidence that in this period of life the appearance of the hiatal hernia is more frequent, one of the possible triggers of reflux with acid that goes back to up and creates noise.
Other causes include overweight and the use of certain drugs, especially in the elderly population, which can reduce the tone of the valve that regulates the exchange of material between the esophagus and stomach.
These are just examples, in all circumstances you should always seek the advice of your doctor.
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“Daily Health Pills” is Tipsforwomens TakeCare's podcast series, curated by Federico Mereta. In each episode we talk about prevention, care and good habits.