Dental Health Tips: Drinking Water Strengthens Your Teeth

Drinking water is one of the easiest and most beneficial things you can do to help prevent cavities.

Adequate hydration is important because dehydration causes dry mouth. This results in reduced saliva which is the major source of mouth fluid. Reduced salivary flow causes fewer bacteria fighting immune factors to be present.

A dry mouth leads to food particles getting trapped in around the teeth. When bacteria feed on these particles they produce acid that causes small holes in the enamel. Gradually these holes get larger and become visible cavities.

Saliva contains antibacterial properties that prevent the type of germs that cause gum disease. Just like an auto gas tank that runs out, less saliva causes the ability of the mouth to fight gum disease bacteria to lessen and stall out. As a result, gum disease takes hold and worsens over time leading to tooth loss.

As bacteria grow in the mouth, they produce byproducts that include mercaptans and hydrogen sulfides. These compounds smell like rotten eggs, and we detect them as bad breath. The more saliva you have, the fewer bacteria and the fewer of these compounds accumulate and cause bad breath.

Although coffee and alcohol are fluids, paradoxically they cause the body to lose fluids and can lead to dehydration. As a result, the stage is set for bad breath.

Saliva contains certain of calcium and other minerals such as bicarbonate and phosphate which act like repair tools to refill the small holes caused by bacterial acid. Without normal saliva amounts, your teeth and enamel have these defects grow larger.

The calcium structure of a tooth breaks down and is built up every day, just like other tissues in the body. When fluoride is added to drinking water, the power of cavity prevention soars. Adding fluoride in your toothpaste or water helps to rebuild the teeth by repairing the small holes that are caused by bacterial acids. Fluoride also makes the teeth more resistant to acid, reducing the incidence of cavities.

Follow your thirst to determine how much water you should drink every day. There is no universally agreed on amount of water you should drink every day, but your thirst is an excellent guide to help you stay on track.