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My Doctor Says I'm Suffering from Ptyalism?

Anne Sommers, Licensed Midwife


I'm about eight weeks pregnant, and my doctor says I'm suffering from ptyalism. The condition is so bad, that it leaves me dehydrated. My job also requires constant communication with the public. As you can imagine, it's quite challenging to go about my day-to-day duties. I've tried chewing gum and sucking on mints and other forms of hard candy, but it makes it worse! Eating salty potato chips temporarily eases the condition, but I can't eat chips every minute of the day. My doctor says he hasn't heard of any medication or cure. I hope you have. I can't stand the thought of spending the remainder of my pregnancy like this!

During pregnancy there is normally an increase of body fluids, including saliva. I understand it is more common in the first trimester to suffer from your condition. I haven't found any solutions yet, improper digestion could have something to do with it.

Inquire at your local health food store to see if there is any homeopathic, herbal or vitamin supplements that you could take to help.

Also, there is a part of the spine directly related to TMJ and the salivary glands. You may wish to contact a chiropractor.

Best wishes
Anne Sommers, LM

Anne Sommers, LM is a Licensed Midwife in Southern California and founder of Agape Perinatal Consultation & Birthing Services. Anne has attended and personally delivered hundreds of beautiful bouncing babies in some very wonderful and natural settings -- like in the water! She has appeared on various Southern California radio and cable television shows, talked to birth organizations, was editor for several child birth publications and was the owner, editor and publisher of "Mom" Magazine, a quarterly publication in circulation for over seven years. She completed Seattle Midwifery School's Challenge Process and the NARM exam (supervised by the California Medical Board) qualifying her for midwifery licensure. Anne actually made history as noted in the Orange County Register for being one of Southern California's first Licensed Midwives. She is also the mother of two children, born at home, with the attendance of midwives.

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Aisha N Jun 15, 2018 04:18:54 AM ET

Started spitting earlier than 1 week. i'm now 19 weeks, and oh god it's getting worse. the heartburn causes a lot of salivating and it's more rough on me. i can't stay with my friends for even a quarter a min i feel like i have to excuse myself. sometimes i spit until my throat goes dry but cannot stop. i think i'll have to bear with it until childbirth. a lot of people enjoy their pregnancies, but for the saliva spitting it makes it a long journey, and now even it has reached the point where i don't sleep at all. anyone with similar situation?

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cat Apr 26, 2018 06:29:22 PM ET

Ptyalism, when did yours start and when did it stop? i have come to accept that nothing really helps. so, i just want to see if there is any insight! please comment.

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Tit Mar 12, 2018 12:02:50 AM ET

I have been spitting for two weeks with symptoms of pregnancy. it's my period and i am still spitting. am i pregnant?

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Christine Persley Feb 3, 2018 06:37:20 AM ET

I am 10 weeks. extreme nausea and excessive salivation started at week 6. still going strong at week 10. went to the doctor yesterday and she prescribed dica and gravol for the nausea and granidine for the excess salivation. so far the vomiting has stopped completely but, i still feel a little nauseated every now and then. the excessive salivation continues but it is getting better because it is easier to swallow than before. what i realize is that before i went to the doc every time i vomited my excess salivation stopped for a long period and i felt so normal for a while but, now that i stop vomiting i still have excess salivation (it's just easier to swallow) and i am still feeling nauseated at times. this goes to show us that vomiting makes us feel better!!

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Kee Kee Palmer Feb 3, 2018 06:21:27 AM ET

I am 11 weeks now. i have been experiencing excessive salivation since week 6. it's horrible! i hate it! i can't talk to anyone without saying excuse me to take a spit. i just don't enjoy being pregnant because of it. anyhow, i went to the doctor and she said it's because of heart burn and she prescribed apo-ranitidine. so far i am still spitting but, i think it is getting lesser than before. i really hate this and i hope it stops all together soon. lots of water helps the saliva to go down as well!

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Naa Jan 27, 2018 07:40:54 AM ET

I get ptyalism from 7 weeks up until i have the baby,as soon as the umbilical cord is cut the ptyalism stops. for some women it stops after the fourth trimester others have it the whole pregnancy like i did and i am currently in that situation. nothing works for it for me. surprisingly most people and my doctor too had not heard of this symptom during pregnancy. i make quick trips to the bathroom and sometimes force my self to swallow the excess nauseating bitter saliva when i'm at work. when i'm at home i have a disposable cup,stuff it with paper towels and spit into it whenever i have to. i always have one by my bed when i'm sleeping too. hang in there mommies, take one day at a time and look towards the beautiful bundle of joy you will have at the end of your journey.

Lazara Feb 20, 2018 05:49:41 AM ET

The exact same thing happens to me ! it only goes away after the baby is out, then i can be myself again. it's like magic ! i am so glad to know i am not alone on this.

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kaye Jan 25, 2018 02:36:45 PM ET

Pure honey. 1 tsp. works well with me.

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Jia Jan 23, 2018 12:00:04 AM ET

I've had this symptom since 2nd month until now. i'm 3 and a half months pregnant. the taste of saliva is nauseating. i can't swallow it. how do i get better? do i keep practicing swallowing saliva until i get used to the taste again or do my taste buds suddenly just miraculously be able to tolerate it one fine day n all will be back to normal?

Kee Kee Palmer Feb 3, 2018 06:44:00 AM ET

I don't think you can just swallow saliva because eventually you want to throw up when you do! i think it has to go away naturally or by the use of medicine! it helps me when i just throw up! my excess salivation disappears for hours when i do that! throw up, brush my teeth, then drink alot of water! from there i feel better for the entire day until i eat again. doc prescribed gravidine for me as well. helped me to swallow easier but, doesn't stop excessive salivation.

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Madi Jan 21, 2018 12:03:23 AM ET

Spitting, does it end after delivery? please tell me, i am much worried?

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Raga Jan 7, 2018 12:33:31 AM ET

I had this horrible spitting starting from the 12th week. since from that day, every minute i need to spit. i put one disposal bag beside me every time. i tried all the things but nothing is helpful. hang on guys, i got relief from 22 weeks. i know how does it feel but be patient.

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