Before beginning treatment, have a thorough cleansing performed and have any dental work completed. Since the mouth has trouble neutralizing acids because of the lack of saliva, important minerals can be lost within the teeth. This can lead to tooth decay. You may want to consult with a dentist that is experienced in treating complications of oral problems because of radiation therapy.
There are several things you can do to remedy dry mouth during radiation therapy. Try drinking through a straw if drinking liquids is difficult. Many physicians recommend adding a few drops of glycerine (available in drugstores) to water to help it adhere to the mouth better. This will help keep the mouth moist for a longer period of time.
Avoid sugar as much as possible. Sugar also dries the mouth. The same goes for alcohol, caffeinated drinks and smoking. Spicy foods may also cause pain in the mouth, so be careful when making food choices.
The good news is that dry mouth usually goes away after treatment has ended. In rare cases it may become a chronic problem after treatment. There are medications your dentist or physician can prescribe to remedy dry mouth.
It is also important to maintain good oral hygiene and visit regularly with a dentist after treatment.