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Frequently Asked Questions
There are many brands and forms of saliva substitutes available. Not all brands are listed on this leaflet. Follow all directions on your medicine label and package.
Saliva substitutes are manmade forms of the mucus secretions normally produced in the human mouth. Saliva substitutes help to create artificial saliva when the body does not produce enough on its own.
Saliva substitutes are used to help relieve dryness and pain or discomfort in the mouth or throat that may be caused by certain disease conditions, medications, surgery, or chemotherapy and radiation treatments.
Saliva substitutes may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.
You should not use saliva substitutes if you are allergic to any of the ingredients listed on the product package.
Ask a doctor before using saliva substitutes if you are pregnant or breast-feeding.
A saliva substitute is for use only in the mouth. Do not get it in your eyes.
Use your saliva substitute product exactly as directed on the label, or as prescribed by your doctor.
Saliva substitutes work inside your mouth and are not meant to be swallowed.
To use the oral rinse or other liquid saliva substitutes, swish a small amount in your mouth for 30 seconds, then spit out.
The oral powder must be mixed with about 1 ounce of water before using it. Stir the mixture and use it right away, even if you need to swish 2 or 3 times to get the full amount. Do not save the mixture for later use.
Shake the oral spray gently before each use and spray directly into your mouth and onto your tongue.
The tablet or lozenge can be held in the mouth for long periods of time, even while you are sleeping. Some tablets are pressed onto to your tooth or gums to help hold them in place.
Saliva substitute gel, paste, or swabs may be applied directly onto the gums, tongue, teeth, or sides of the mouth. Follow all instructions carefully.
How often you use a saliva substitute may depend on your condition or your medication schedule.
In most cases, saliva substitutes are used 3 to 5 times per day or whenever your mouth feels dry and uncomfortable. When used during chemotherapy or radiation, you may need to use saliva substitutes up to 10 times per day beginning on or before the day of your treatment. Follow all dosing instructions very carefully.
Do not allow a child to use this medicine without adult supervision.
Saliva substitutes may be only part of a complete treatment program that includes using other oral hygiene methods. Follow your doctor's instructions very closely.
Store your saliva substitute as directed on the product label. Avoid moisture, heat, and light.
Since saliva substitutes are used when needed, you may not be on a dosing schedule. If you are on a schedule, use the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
An overdose of a saliva substitute is not expected to be dangerous. Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222 if anyone has accidentally swallowed large amounts of this product.
You may need to avoid eating or drinking anything for about 15 minutes after using saliva substitutes. Follow all directions on the label of the product you are using.
Rinse with water if the saliva substitute gets in your eyes.
Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
It is not likely that other drugs you take orally or inject will have an effect on saliva substitutes used in the mouth and not swallowed. But many drugs can interact with each other. Tell each of your health care providers about all medicines you use, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.
Your pharmacist can provide more information about saliva substitutes.
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