What are overactive saliva glands?


Quick Answer

Overactive salivary glands produce too much saliva in the mouth, according to WebMD. Salivary glands normally become overactive when a person eats very spicy foods.

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Full Answer

WebMD explains that excessive saliva is not a serious problem unless it persists. The mouth normally makes more or less saliva, depending on what a person eats or drinks. The body deals with excess saliva by swallowing more than usual. The tongue's taste buds play a key role in the production of saliva. If a person eats very spicy or sour foods, the taste buds react by telling the body to produce more saliva. Compared to sweet foods, acidic foods typically trigger more saliva production. Changing diets is a recommended solution for reducing excess saliva.

If a person has too much saliva all the time, it is important to see a doctor as it can be a side effect of a medication or a result of a certain condition or disease, notes WebMD. People with poor muscle control in the mouth and face suffer from chronic drooling, which causes too much saliva and drooling. Lou Gehrig's disease, Bell's palsy, cerebral palsy and gastroesophageal reflux disease are some conditions that result in excessive saliva. Seizure medicines and schizophrenia medicines are also possible causes.

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