Oral Care for Oncology Patients: #1 Recommended Dry Mouth Treatment-Biotene oral balance.
Your Oral Environment
Oral complications occur in almost all patients receiving radiation for head and neck malignancies in more than 75% of bone marrow transplant recipients and in nearly 40% of patients receiving chemotherapy. Some complications only occur during treatment; others, such as Dry mouth, may persist for many years after treatment and lead to serious oral condition.
Your mouth’s major protective system comes from three pairs of salivary glands. Cancer treatments can cause dry mouth/salivary gland dysfunction increasing the risk of oral infections, comprises speaking, chewing and swallowing. Persistent dry mouth also increases decay, bad breath and gum disease.
Oral Complications during Cancer Treatment
*Mucositis/Stomatitis: Mild to severe inflammation and ulceration of the mucous membranes; increased risk of pain, oral and systemic infection and nutritional compromises.
*Infection: Bacterial, Viral and fungal: resulting from xerostomia (dry mouth), myelosuppression and/or damage to the mucosa from chemotherapy/radiation.
*Dental Decay and Demineralization: Decay and erosion of the tooth’s surface as a result of changes in both the quality and quantity of salvia from cancer treatment.
*Bleeding: From the decreased platelets.
*Taste Alternation: Ranging from mild to severe and unpleasant to loss of taste.
Oral Hygiene Protocol:
*Use toothpastes that are specially formulated for cancer patients such as Biotene, which contains natural salivary enzymes that boost and replenish your oral defense system. Clinically proven to inhibit harmful microorganisms associated with gingivitis and oral irritations. Biotene contains no sodium lauryl sulfate, a detergent found in other toothpastes and known to promote canker sores and mouth ulcers.
*Use a mouthwash specially formulated for cancer patients, such as Biotene alcohol-free mouthwash with salivary enzyme protection. Gentle, moisturizing and helps to restore a healthy balance of oral flora. Can be used as often needed!
*Gentle brush teeth, gums and tongue with an extra soft toothbrush after every meal, morning and before bed.
*Chew Biotene sugar-free gum to stimulate salivary flow and protect between brushing (Biotene Gum does not stick to dentures).
*Sip water frequently and such on ice chips.
*Avoid hard, sugar candy and carbonated soda.
*Check for inflammation or infection and report suspicious area.
*To relieve dry mouth use a salvia substitute as mouth moisturizing gel.
*Oral balance can provide instant relief to serious dry mouth sufferers and up to 8 hours of overnight relief. Also, fights odor and cavity causing bacteria.
*Apply Oral balance directly onto tongue and around your mouth. Apply whenever needing relief of dryness.
*Denture wearers can also experience additional problems due to dry mouth. Normal denture adhesives don’t work well if your mouth is dry. Try Biotene dry mouth denture grip. This adhesive adheres to your oral mocusa even in a dry mouth. Biotene also contains odor fighting enzymes to freshen breath.
If your mouth is sore:
*Take small bites of food, chew slowly and sip liquids with your meals.
*Avoid sharp, crunchy foods that could scrape or cut your mouth.
*Try a teaspoonful of Oral Balance Moisturizing gel prior to meals to assist with swallowing.
Other points to remember:
*Be sure to give your dentist your doctor’s phone number.
*Keep in close communication with your nurse.
*See a dentist at least 2 weeks before your therapy begins.
*If you have begun cancer treatment and have not seen a dentist, see one as soon as possible.
*You can help prevent serious oral complications. Side effects often happen because a person’s mouth is not healthy before cancer therapy starts.
*Not all oral complications can be avoided, but the fewer side effects you have the more likely you will stay on your cancer treatment schedule.
Do not forget:
*Visit your dentist regularly.
*Take meticulous care of your mouth.
*Speak with your doctor, pharmacist and dentist about any oral complications you have.
American Cancer Society
A program of support for people with oral and head and neck cancer
American Dental Association
Biotene and Oral balance are available over the counter, without a prescription, at pharmacies, grocery chains and mass merchandise stores.
Call toll-free 1-888-Biotene
Rancho Dominguez, CA 90220 USA
*Disclaimer: This information was taken from the Laclede Inc. pamphlet on Biotene and Oral Balance. I have not used the product so I have no opinion either yes or no to the use of the product. Please either call the company or stop by your local store for more information.