is water good for teeth and gums - woman drinking a glass of water

Why Is Water Good for Your Teeth and Gums?

There’s more than one reason why we need to drink eight glasses of water each day to be healthy. Staying hydrated has many benefits—it helps you maintain a normal body temperature, keep your joints lubricated, get rid of waste, and more. But did you know that drinking plenty of water is also good for your teeth and gums? Let’s take a look at how water can affect your teeth.

Four Reasons Water Is Good for Healthy Teeth and Gums

1: Stronger Teeth

The sensitive insides of your teeth are protected by the enamel, which is the thin, hard outer layer of a tooth. But it’s not invincible—things like bacteria buildup, acidic foods and drinks, and bad habits like nail biting and tooth grinding can all wear down your enamel over time.

However, drinking water that contains fluoride actually helps restore tooth enamel through a process known as remineralization. Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that your body uses to repair minor damage and build stronger enamel. However, only tap water and mineral water contain fluoride, so drinking filtered, bottled, or distilled water won’t help with enamel erosion.  

2: Cleaner Mouth

When you eat or drink anything other than water, food particles and sticky residue get left behind for bacteria to feed on. The more the bacteria eat, the more damage they cause, because they produce acids that eat away at your enamel. 

Drinking water every day helps flush away food particles and bacteria, keeping your mouth clean and healthy. Plus, water won’t stain your teeth, and it can even reduce staining if you sip it after consuming coffee, dark soda, red wine, or black tea, giving you a brighter smile. 

3: Hydrated Mouth

Your saliva naturally washes away food particles and bacteria. But when you have a condition called dry mouth, your body fails to produce enough saliva to properly hydrate your mouth and keep it clean. 

A dry mouth allows bacteria to thrive, increasing your risk of tooth decay. So it’s important to drink plenty of water to promote saliva production and prevent (or at least reduce) the effects of dry mouth. 

4: Less Gum Disease, Tooth Decay, and Bad Breath

A buildup of bacteria in your mouth can have many negative consequences. For instance, bacteria give off a foul odor, causing bad breath. Bacteria also attack your gums and cause inflammation, leading to a serious infection known as gum disease. And as long as bacteria stay on your teeth, the acids they produce destroy your enamel, resulting in tooth decay.

The best way to eliminate bacteria and prevent these dental problems is to brush twice a day and floss at least once daily. However, drinking water throughout the day also helps reduce the number of bacteria in your mouth, keeping your teeth and gums healthy. 

Gentle Dentist in Gilbert, Arizona

Drinking water is extremely beneficial to your oral health, but it’s no substitute for good oral care. It’s essential that you visit the dentist at least twice a year for regular checkups, no matter how much water you drink. 

At Lifetime Family Dental, we perform gentle cleanings and exams, and offer an extensive list of other services to improve the health of your teeth and gums. Give us a call at 480-558-4331 today to make an appointment.

Images used under creative commons license – commercial use (1/2/2023). Photo by engin akyurt on Unsplash