The explosion of weight loss medications in the pharmaceutical industry is an indication of the heightened awareness of obesity experienced by the public. Adipex-P (phentermine hydrochloride) is just one such drug on the market, but the potential side effects for this drug have earned it more media attention than others. Among other things, Adipex-P causes xerostomia (also known as “dry mouth” or “cotton mouth”), which can be uncomfortable in addition to negatively affecting your health.
The reasons why Adipex-P causes xerostomia are not known, except that this weight loss drug works similarly to an amphetamine. It is technically classified as an anorectic, or appetite suppressant, but it can also have a direct impact on your metabolism. Dry mouth, or cotton mouth, is also a side effect of amphetamines and can disrupt your daily life.
It is possible, however, that Adipex-P causes dry mouth or cotton mouth simply because it is an anorectic. This drug affects the centers in your brain that control hunger and essentially “flip the switch,” forcing your body to believe that it isn’t hungry. Since salivation is an organic response to hunger and the presence of food, xerostomia can result.
Unfortunately, xerostomia is only the beginning of the health and psychological problems that can be attributed to dry mouth or cotton mouth. Xerostomia causes gingivitis because of the absence of saliva in the mouth, which can in turn cause bad breath, sore throats, hoarseness and difficulty forming words. According to the Oral Cancer Foundation, xerostomia can also cause oral infections, such as candidiasis. This, among other things, has caused consumers to avoid taking Adipex-P.
If you experience dry mouth or cotton mouth while taking Adipex-P, it is important to inform your doctor immediately. This is especially true if you experience other serious side effects, such as increased heart rate or blood pressure. These side effects can indicate serious reactions to the drug, and xerostomia should not be dismissed or ignored.
It is also important to avoid activities that might increase chances of xerostomia while taking Adipex-P. According to eMedTv, dry mouth or cotton mouth may be exacerbated by smoking, drinking alcohol (which will dehydrate you as well), drinking caffeinated beverages and eating spicy foods.
If you feel that your xerostomia caused by Adipex-P is affecting your daily life, it might be best to sleep with a humidifier in your bedroom and increase the amount of water you drink in a day. This will help combat dry mouth or cotton mouth so you are more comfortable.
Furthermore, you might want to make an appointment with your dentist if you experience xerostomia for a long period of time while taking Adipex-P. As mentioned above, dry mouth or cotton mouth can cause gingivitis and other diseases and infections, so oral hygiene is particularly important.
Oral Cancer Foundation, Xerostomia information for dentists
eMedTv, Adipex and Dry Mouth