Drugs with Dry Mouth Side Effects

While there are several causes of dry mouth (clinically termed xerostomia), there are over 1,800 commonly prescribed medications that list dry mouth as a side effect. The list of drugs included on our website is meant to be a reference guide, used for information purposes only, and not as medical advice.

Medicines
Credit: nlm

Please also keep in mind that due to the ever-changing nature of available drugs, this does not guarantee that the data is complete and/or up to date.

Below is a list of some of the most common medicinal groups/ingredients that cause dry mouth. You can also reference our drugs with dry mouth side-effects table for a quick view of common drugs that could be causing dry mouth symptoms.

Atropine and Scopolamine

Atropine and scopolamine can most commonly be used to treat spasms of the gastrointestinal tract, the bladder and the biliary tract. This is helpful for controlling conditions such as colitis, spastic bladder, diverticulitis, colic in infants, renal and biliary colic, peptic ulcers, motion sickness, nausea and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

Atropine and scopolamine may also be used for conditions other than those listed above.

Atropine and scopolamine are known to reduce the secretions of many organs including the salivary glands.

Antidepressants

Antidepressants are drugs used for the treatment of major depressive disorders, as well as other conditions including dysthymia, anxiety disorders, obsessive compulsive disorders (OCD), eating disorders, chronic pain, neuropathic pain and, in some cases, dysmenorrhea, snoring, migraines, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) substance abuse and sleep disorders.

The most common anti-depressants that list dry mouth as a side effect are tricyclic antidepressants (Amitriptyline, Doxepin, Nortriptyline, Amoxipine, etc.), selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (Celexa, Lexapro, Prozac, Paxil, Zoloft, etc.), and lithium (Lithobid, etc.).

Antidepressants may also be used for conditions other than those listed above.

Antihypertensives

Antihypertensives are a class of drugs that are most commonly used to reduce the blood pressure of hypertensive (high blood pressure) patients.

The most common antihypertensives to treat high blood pressure and list dry mouth as a side effect include Terazosin (Hytrin), Prazosin (Minipress), Clonidine (Catapres, Kapvay, Nexiclon XR), Atenolol (Tenormin), and Propranolol (Inderal, InnPran, Propranolol HCI Intensol).

Antihypertensives may also be used for conditions other than those listed above.

Phenothiazines

Phenothiazines are used to treat serious mental and emotional disorders (including schizophrenia) and, in certain patients, to treat severe nausea and vomiting. Dry mouth (among others) is one of the most common side effects with these medicines.

Common phenothiazines that list dry mouth as a side effect include Compazine, Compro, Mellaril, Prolixin, Sparine, Thorazine, Torecan, and Phenergran.

Phenothiazines may also be used for conditions other than those listed above.

Antihistamines

Antihistamines are used to treat a plethora of conditions including allergies, atopic dermatitis (eczema), to relieve itching from illnesses such as chicken pox, urticaria (hives), and for some forms of motion sickness.

Examples of antihistamines that may cause dry mouth include Atarax, Vistaril, Clainex, Cyproheptadine, Palgic, Xyzal, Allegra, Benadry, Dimetane, Claritin, Alavert, Tavis, Chlor-Trimeton, and Zyrtec.

Antihistamines may also be used for conditions other than those listed above.

Anti-Reflux Drugs (Proton Pump Inhibitors)

Anti-reflux drugs - particularly proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) - are most commonly used to treat peptic ulcer disease as a way to reduce irritation of the stomach lining, allowing the ulcer to heal.

Examples of proton pump inhibitors that may cause dry mouth include eesomeprazole, naproxen, lansoprazole, omeprazole, rabeprazole, Nexium, Vimovo, Prevacid, Prilosec, Zegerid, and Aciphex.

Proton Pump Inhibitors may also be used for conditions other than those listed above.

Opioids

Opioid drugs are most commonly used to treat moderate to severe pain. 

Examples of opioids that may cause dry mouth include codeine, fentanyl, Actiq, Fentora, hydrocodone, Lorcet, Vicodin, hydromorphone, Dilaudid, Demerol, methadone, morphine, Avinza, oxycodone, OxyContin, Percocet, and Roxicodone.

Opioids may also be used for conditions other than those listed above.

Cannabinoids

Cannabinoids are most commonly used to treat neuropathic pain and spasticity, Multiple Sclerosis, advanced cancer pain and nausea/vomiting, as an appetite stimulant for AIDS patients, as neuroprotective agent to protect the brain from damage following cardiac surgery, to regain memory and other high-level functions following Traumatic Brain Injuries, as an anti-inflammatory to help relieve pain from arthritis, for bladder control, hypertension, tumor surveillance, and more.

Examples of cannabinoids that may cause dry mouth include Dronabinol, Marinol, Nabilone, Cesamet, Sativex, Dexanabinol, CT-3 (ajulemic acid), Cannabinor, HU 308, HU 331, Rimonabant, Acomplia, Taranbant, MK-0364 and marijuana.

Cannabinoids may also be used for conditions other than those listed above.

Cytotoxic Drugs

Cytotoxic drugs are most commonly used in the treatment of several forms of arthritis and other conditions, including: systematic lupus erythematosus, steroid-resistant polymyositis or dermatomyositis, Wegener’s granulomatosis, and some forms of vasculitis. They also have the ability to treat malignancies by directly killing tumor cells.

Examples of cytotoxic drugs that may cause dry mouth include azathioprine, Imuran, cyclophosphamide, Cytoxan, methotrexate, Rheumatrex, and Trexall.

Cytotoxic drugs may also be used for conditions other than those listed above.

Retinoids

While retinoids are best known for their uses in dermatology (acne, psoriasis, and photoaging), they may also be used in the treatment of acute promyelocytic leukemia.

Examples of retinoids that may cause dry mouth include acitrein, Soriatane, tretinoin, and isotretinoin.

Retinoids may also be used for conditions other than those listed above.

Bupropion

Bupropion is most commonly used in the treatment of depression or season affective disorder (SAD). However, it may also be used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), in combination with biopolar medication, or to help people quit smoking by decreasing cravings and withdrawals effects.

Examples of bupropions that may cause dry mouth include Wellbutrin, Aplenzin, Budeprion SR, Buproban, Forfivo XL, Wellbutrin, Wellbutrin SR, Wellbutrin XL, Zyban, Zyban Advantage Pack, Budeprion XL.

Bupropions may also be used for conditions other than those listed above.

Protease Inhibitors

Protease inhibitors (PIs) are antiretroviral medicines that are most commonly used to prevent the HIV and hepatitis C viruses from multiplying in the body.

Examples of protease inhibitors that may cause dry mouth include atazanavir, darunavir, fosamprenavir, indinavir, nelfinavir, ritonavir, saquinavir, tipranavir, Reyataz, Prezista, Lexiva, Crixivan, Viracept, Norvir, Invirase, Aptivus, boceprevir, Victrelis, telaprevir, and Incivek.

Protease inhibitors may also be used for conditions other than those listed above.

Didanosine

Didanosine is most commonly used along with other medications to treat human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection by decreasing the amount of HIV in the blood.

Didansosine medications are antiretroviral medicines that are most commonly used to prevent the HIV and hepatitis C viruses from multiplying in the body.

Examples of didansosine medications that may cause dry mouth include Videx and Videx EC. 

Didanosine may also be used for conditions other than those listed above.

Diuretics

Diuretics may be used to treat a number of heart-related conditions, including high blood pressure, heart failure, diabetes, edema, some types of kidney and liver problems, and glaucoma.

Examples of diuretics that may cause dry mouth include Esidrix, Zaroxolyn, Lasix, Bumex, Aldactone, Dyrenium,

Diuretics may also be used for conditions other than those listed above.

Ephedrine

Ephedra or ephedrine is most commonly found as a vitamin or supplement used as a performance-enhancing drug or as a weight-loss aid.

Examples of ephedrine that may cause dry mouth include dietary supplements such as Xenadrine, Diablos ECA Fire Stack, Xtreme Thermoburn Ephedra, Kaizen Ephedrine HCL, Ultimate Burn, Green Stinger, and Yellow Bullet. 

Ephedrine may also be used for conditions other than those listed above.

Benzodiazepines

Benzodiazepines are most commonly used to treat epilepsy, panic disorders (anxiety), or to help control certain manic symptoms in bipolar disorder such as mania, insomnia, and seizures.

Examples of benzodiazepines that may cause dry mouth include alprazolam, Xanax, clonazepam, Klonopin, diazepam, Valium, lorazepam, Ativan, clorazepate, and Tranxene. 

Benzodiazepines may also be used for conditions other than those listed above.

Interleukin-2

Interleukin-2 (IL-2) is most commonly used in the treatment of cancers such as malignant melanoma, renal cell cancer, and in clinical trials for the treatment of chronic viral infections.

Interleukin-2 is also known as aldesleukin, proleukin, or IL-2 and may cause dry mouth in its users.

Interleukin-2 may also be used for conditions other than those listed above.

Dry Mouth Relief Products

There are many options available on the market to relieve the symptoms of dry mouth caused by prescription medication, including toothpaste, mints, gum, and mouthwash. However, for long-lasting relief, XyliMelts by Oracoat is a dry mouth product that comes in the form of a disc that adheres to your gums and stimulates saliva for hours on end.  

OraHealth Corporation

13434 SE 27th Place
Bellevue, WA 98005-4211
Ph: 1-877-672 6541
Ph: 1-425-451 9876