Q:

What is the chemical composition of saliva?

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Quick Answer

The chemical composition of saliva is 98 percent water and 2 percent other substances such as electrolytes or minerals (sodium and potassium), mucus (mucopolysaccharides and glycoproteins), antibacterial compounds (thiocyanate and hydrogen peroxide) and enzymes. Enzymes, such as amylase, aid in the breakdown of carbohydrates and fats.

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Full Answer

Saliva is a frothy substance that is produced and secreted from the salivary glands. Referred to as “the mouth’s blood,” it is important for dental health and prevents tooth decay. Saliva lubricates the teeth, tongue and tissues of the mouth. A healthy person produces 0.75 to 1.5 liters of saliva per day, but the amount drops to almost zero while sleeping.

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