The short conclusive answer to this question is Yes. While water is regarded as one of the most important fluids for the health of the human body, its benefits to oral health are normally overlooked by many.
Drinking water is one of the easiest and most important actions you can take towards achieving healthy teeth for you and your family. This is not to overlook the benefits water has on your other body systems, but instead, it is a call for you to be aware of how water acts to protect your teeth.
Here’s Why Drinking Water Is Good for Your Overall Oral Health
Water is an essential component in ensuring all your different body systems are in good health. Here are some of the benefits you stand to gain, specifically on your oral health, by frequently drinking enough water.
1. It Helps Keep Your Mouth Clean
Be it by cleaning away food particles or washing off harmful chemicals or substances, the simple act of drinking water is a sure way to ensure your mouth stays clean. When you drink water or actively use it to clean your mouth through gargling, small water currents are created in your mouth, which effectively knocks off any foreign particles in your mouth.
2. It Strengthens Your Teeth
When you drink fluoridated water, as is vital in most water supplies, the fluoride acts on your teeth by strengthening the enamel by restoring calcium and phosphorus levels. You can also see the importance of this from the fact that most dental practices usually apply fluoride solutions at the end of teeth cleaning sessions.
Young children must get used to slightly fluoridated water from an early age. When they drink the water consistently, their bodies get a steady supply of fluoride, which acts on their teeth and reduces their chances of getting tooth cavities as they get older.
3. Water Helps Keep Your Mouth Moist
Saliva is essential in maintaining the required mineral levels in your mouth. When your body is not producing enough saliva, it is primarily due to dehydration because saliva is mostly water. When there is enough saliva in your mouth, it helps wash away harmful bacteria from the enamel, ensuring you have healthy teeth.
4. Water is Calorie-Free
Since staying hydrated always is vital for both your oral and overall body health, water is naturally occurring and, therefore, the healthier hydrating option. With the ever-increasing supply of carbonated drinks, you may often fall prey to choosing a sugar-based drink rather than water to hydrate.
Regardless of the obvious energy benefits that these sugary drinks have, they should not be used as a simple means to stay hydrated due to their calorie-rich nature. It would be best to stick to water because most processed drinks have chemical components that may harm your oral health or overall body health.
5. It Helps in Fighting Bad Breath
While delicious food may be aromatic when it’s on the plate, the same cannot be said about it once it’s stayed inside your mouth for a while after you’ve eaten. When you have a meal, often particles of what you have eaten will get lodged between your teeth or attach themselves to your gums and tongue.
These particles become partially digested when they meet the digestive compounds in saliva and thus tend to produce a not so pleasant smell. It is essential to drink water frequently after eating to wash away any food residues from your mouth.
6. Water Lowers Your Mouth’s pH Level
When you take foods and drinks that are relatively far on either end of the pH scale, they may have harmful effects on your teeth. For example, acid-rich foods and beverages may harm your teeth by eroding the enamel. Whenever you eat such foods, it’s essential to wash them down with sufficient amounts of water.
Healthy Water Drinking Habits for You and Your Family
While it is recommended that we always stay hydrated, it may be challenging to ensure we always drink enough water. Here are tips on how you can provide both you and your family are drinking water as much as you should.
Always have a reusable water bottle around you
Whenever you have a reusable water bottle around you, it provides a visual reminder that it’s time to hydrate. Other than the obvious environmental benefit of reduction in single-use plastic bottles, having a reusable bottle around you has a knock-on effect of acting as a visual reminder to hydrate for those around you as well.
Understand your water intake needs
Away from the recommended eight glasses of water per day, you may have varying fluid intake needs depending on personal health or environmental conditions. Environmental conditions like heat in the summer may require you to drink more water than you usually would. At the same time, personal health conditions like fever may require that you frequently take in water.
Set Up a water drinking schedule
When you establish a water drinking schedule, it can act as a checklist to easily monitor your fluid intake.
Set reminders for when to drink water
You can do this through smartphone apps dedicated to reminding you to take water or a simple alarm on your phone. You can even sync some apps to send notifications and reminders even to your email.
Frequently eat foods that are rich in water
Foods like zucchini, cabbages, and watermelons are made up of over ninety percent water. Having them as a snack or as part of a meal can help in supplementing your fluid intake and keeping you hydrated.
Use water in place of other drinks whenever it’s possible
Whenever you can, it is good to replace processed drinks such as soda with water. This not only reduces the calories you take, but it also makes you less prone to health conditions like type two diabetes that can be a result of high and frequent sugar intake.