Can probiotics cause dry mouth

Can Probiotics Cause Dry Mouth and Make You Thirsty?

I never knew that probiotics could be the potential cause of dry mouth until I discovered some search phrases about it while doing some research on the side effects of probiotic supplements.

I have been taking probiotics for years now, but I have never experienced dry mouth. Rather the opposite has always been the case.

Well, from my extensive research, it is a NO, probiotics do not cause dry mouth. Instead, they surprisingly give relief to those with xerostomia by restoring good bacteria in the mouth.

As already stated, it is not probiotics to blame for causing dry mouth; then why do people experience dry mouth while using probiotics?

Well, I have come up with thorough research to give answers to all these questions, and you are just a few scrolls away, so keep reading.

Can Probiotics Help With Dry Mouth? 

Yes, probiotics can help with dry mouth by increasing salivary flow rate. It is also known to lessen the risk of xerostomia and hyposalivation.

The unstimulated salivary flow rate is roughly 0.3-0.4 ml/min, while the normal stimulated salivary flow rate ranges from 1.5 to 2.0 ml/min. 

While hyposalivation is any flow rate below 0.1 ml/min and 0.7 ml/min for unstimulated and stimulated saliva, respectively, probiotics can help a lot with that, as a study published in 2007 suggested.

According to it, the reason for the reduced hyposalivation in people consuming probiotics is yet unknown.

However, it is assumed that probiotics may have had some impact on saliva composition, mucin levels, or salivary immunoglobulin levels, which ultimately resulted in a reduced feeling of dry mouth.

Also, if you’re suffering from hyposalivation due to oral thrush (candida infection), probiotics can help by balancing the oral microbiome and thus preventing the infection from damaging your salivary glands and causing dry mouth.

Particularly, the (Exopolysaccharides) EPS produced by probiotic bacteria with different carbohydrate compositions has a wide range of beneficial features which help in xerostomia.

The strains of Lactobacillus, Lactococcus, Bifidobacterium, Leuconostoc, Pediococcus, Streptococcus, and Weissella sp. are the best-known EPS producers.

EPS produced by particular bacterial strains may act as a substitute for saliva and provide xerostomia sufferers with relief. Many EPS kinds are particularly hygroscopic and can prevent the dehydration of bacteria in biofilms by maintaining moisture around living cells.

In order to moisturize, lubricate, and protect the oral tissues from dehydration, it is believed that EPS produced by probiotics in the oral cavity may absorb water from drinks, meals, and air and retain moisture.

So you may consider probiotics with EPS-producing strains to help you with dry mouth.

Do Probiotics Make You Thirsty?

Yes, probiotics can make you thirsty, and this is undeniable. Well, this is not something to worry about because when you take probiotics, it starts to make adjustments in your gut microbiome and works to remove harmful toxins from your body. And because of this bacterial activity, some people feel thirsty.

Isn’t it a blessing in disguise as you will have an urge to drink plenty of water which is actually a good thing to stay hydrated?

Moreover, it will help you to clean up all the bacteria that die after taking probiotics.

So generally, while taking probiotic supplements, a higher intake of water is a good practice. Due to your increased thirst, you may end up drinking more, which could lead to frequent urination.

However, if you are bothered with this, let me tell you this is a temporary side effect, and you will get over it in a few weeks.

If it doesn’t go away after several weeks of supplementing with it, it is advised to stop taking your probiotic and consult a doctor to rule out any other possible medical causes of your increased thirst.

 Another way to reduce excessive thirst is to change your probiotics and/or reduce your probiotic supplement doses.

Here’s What Else Could be Causing You a dry Mouth:

A dry mouth is associated with a parched sensation in the mouth, making eating, swallowing, and even talking a difficult task, and this uncomfortable condition sometimes jeopardizes your oral health.

It is observed that when you introduce a yeast-based probiotic supplement into your body, it is more likely a chance to make your mouth dry, and this happens when your health is not good; otherwise, taking probiotics that have yeast in them is not going to harm you.

Well, Xerostomia or dry mouth is not a disease but could be a symptom of any other underlying conditions like nasal congestion, high blood pressure, menopause, lupus or diabetes, etc. 

Other causes include:

  • Antibiotics and other drugs can disturb the body’s normal bacterial balance in both the mouth and the rest of the body. 

The medication for anticholinergic effects, cytotoxic effects from chemotherapy, neck and head radiotherapy, and autoimmune and chronic diseases contribute to dry mouth. 

  • Certain viral diseases, including the flu or the common cold, can also induce dry mouth.
  • Aging – the salivary glands produce less saliva as we get older; therefore, dry mouth may result from this. 
  • Medical diseases like Kidney problems, Sjogren’s syndrome, and diabetes are also a few other ailments that might cause dry mouth.

If you have these conditions, then taking probiotics to alleviate dry mouth might not work.

While using probiotics, it is suggested that you should:

Drink a lot of water

Maintaining hydration is crucial for combating dry mouth. To prevent it, you should consume at least 6 to 8 glasses of water each day.

Utilize an oral rinse

An oral rinse can keep your mouth hydrated. – Take a portable humidifier for your trip. A portable humidifier might be a wonderful travel companion if you frequently get dry mouth. 

Chew sugar-free gum

Chewing gums is said to increase your salivary output by 10 times. 

This increase in salivary flow rate is induced by the mechanical and gustatory (taste) stimuli (by chewing these sugar-free gums).

Avoid Caffeine 

If you face xerostomia, it would be wise to avoid caffeine because the tannins in it will affect your mouth badly, making it drier. And when you have coffee, make sure to drink plenty of water.

The recommended water intake is 8 cups per day; however, you should drink more water if you can’t resist drinking coffee.

Consult the doctor

You should consult your doctor if dry mouth lasts for longer than a few weeks and affects your everyday activities.


Can probiotics affect your mouth?

Yes! It does affect your mouth but in a good way

Specific bacterial strains known as oral probiotics are known to support a healthy mouth and enhance oral health. Moreover, they inhibit the growth of harmful (pathogenic) bacteria.

How do you increase good bacteria in your mouth?

You can promote good bacterial growth by maintaining oral hygiene, avoiding consuming too much sugar, and drinking plenty of water.

Can probiotics help with a bad taste in the mouth?

Bad taste in the mouth is referred to as dysgeusia, and yes, probiotics can help you with bad taste if xerostomia is the reason behind it (as probiotics can help alleviate xerostomia).

However, probiotics may not be helpful if dysgeusia is due to an underlying health condition.


Probiotics are incredibly beneficial for our gut health and overall well-being.

They are considered important for your oral health, too, as they can help heaps in restoring good bacteria in the mouth. Moreover, they may stimulate saliva production and give relief from dry mouth.

Although probiotics are usually considered safe, there are some short-lived side effects like thirst, which you can overcome by taking the necessary steps, which are discussed in the article in detail. 

In case these symptoms do not subside with time, then it is suggested to consult a doctor.

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