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  • Writer's pictureEngage PT, OT, SLP Therapy and Wellness

Extra Saliva

Updated: Nov 20, 2021

Many people with PD report having concerns over extra saliva and even drooling. The interesting thing about this is that PD does not cause increased saliva production. In fact, PD can cause decreased saliva.

So, you may be asking where is this extra saliva coming from? It is related to decreased spontaneous swallowing. When we think about PD we usually think about the bigger muscles of your body that help you move, but it also can impact the smaller muscles that help with swallowing.

Extra saliva can be also related to decreased and slow movements of the tongue, mouth and throat muscles. The more forward flexed posture that those with PD find themselves in can also cause saliva to come to the front of the mouth resulting in drooling.

Here are some strategies to help with this:

  • Remember from an early reading about doing exercises for your facial expressions. Those exercises can also help with movement of your mouth.

  • Some people find sucking on a sour candy can trigger swallow reflex

  • Others find gum chewing can help initiate a swallow reflex

  • Working on your posture helps to put your neck muscles in the best position for swallowing.

  • Talk to your neurologist if it continues as there are some medications that can help but they can have serious side effects and also can lead to more dental hygiene issues.

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