Written by Dr.M.D.Mazumdar, MD
For many women, excessive salivation may be one of the first symptoms of pregnancy. In some, it can even occur before the first missed menstrual periods.
Excessive salivation is called 'Ptyalism' or 'Sialorrhea'. It is more common in the first trimester and in women with Hyperemesis gravidarum - a condition in which there is severe nausea and vomiting.
Many women complain that it is one of the most uncomfortable feelings that they encounter during their pregnancy. They have their mouth full of spit at all times of the day. Spitting does not help as the mouth fills up almost at once. Some even say that they are afraid to speak, afraid that someone would say - 'Say it, don't spray it'.
A few women even complain that they drool at night, waking up in the morning with their cheeks and neck covered with spit.
A metallic taste sometimes accompanies the excessive salivation, spoiling their appetite.
Excessive salivation can be due to excess production of saliva or decreased swallowing of saliva.
The exact cause is not known. But it is believed to be due to a combination of many different factors.
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Excessive salivation continues for the first three months and clears up spontaneously at around the 14th week of pregnancy. In some women, it can continue till about the 20th week.
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