An awesome question: what do I do if i drool when I kiss?

Here’s an awesome question about kissing:

Um, so apparently when I kiss, I produce a lot of saliva which is unpleasant for the kissee. How do I prevent this?

How great that you’ve had partners who’ve been able to communicate this to you! – though it’s important to note that people vary in how wet they like their kisses, so if it’s just one person who mentioned it, bear in mind that that one person might simply prefer their kisses on the arid side. People vary, and some people love a sloppy, wet kiss.

So what causes “excess” saliva? Two things: either increased saliva production or decreased swallowing. Which can be caused by a variety of health conditions, so the first step is to make sure your digestive system, mouth, and throat are infection free, that your sinuses and various glands are in good shape, and that any medications don’t have either increased saliva or decreased swallowing as side-effects.

Saliva production is also increased with activation of the parasympathetic nervous system, which, in the context of pleasurable sexual arousal, indicates relaxation – it’s also how genitals receive increased bloodflow: the parasympathetic system relaxes the tissue so that blood can flow into it. So it wouldn’t be at all surprising if you salivate more when you’re turned on.

And also people just vary in their degree of saliva production.

I couldn’t find any research on strategies for reducing salivation, apart from using medications that cause dry mouth. Which you can try, though that seems sort of excessive, when the simplest solution is:


Break the kiss, come up for air, and swallow.

The kissing technique that will be best if you’re a person who produces lots of saliva is not the lip-locked, tongue-tied, breath-mint-exchanging nose-breather of horny 13 year olds. You will want a shallower, lip-tangling, teeth-scraping kiss that wanders to earlobes and throat etc.

Another thing: our “disgust” response to all things sexual changes as our mental state changes – the more sexually aroused a person is, the less gross they find everything related to sex. So if you start your kissing with lots of saliva control, the more aroused your partner gets, the wetter the kisses can get without activating their sense that it’s “too wet.”


While I’m on the subject of kissing technique, can I mention one or two other things?

The worst kiss I ever had was from a guy who seemed totally convinced that the right way to kiss was to put his lips on the outside of my lips  and close them down. I think of him as The Duck Lip Kisser, and actually the duck lip kissing was not the worst thing about his kissing. As with everything, surely there are folks who love a duck lip kiss, but I don’t happen to be among them, so I attempted to communicate to him, as gently and affectionately as I could – and, you know, I teach this stuff for a living, so I’m pretty good at making my partner feel like a hero, focusing on what my partner does that I enjoy, etc – but he simply insisted that he was doing it right.

When I suggested that maybe it wasn’t so much a question or “right” or “wrong” but of personal preference, he scoffed.

And that scoffing is what made The Duck Lip Kisser the worst kisser I have ever kissed. He wouldn’t listen to when I asked, kindly and sweetly, for a different kind of kiss.

Anyway, the general principle with open-mouth kissing is that you open your mouth around either either upper lip or their lower kip. Add tongue, teeth, suction, or saliva in whatever combination or variety gives you both pleasure.