Water and Fluoride combine to bring you the perfect beverage for healthy teeth. That’s Right–If we were choosing a drink to toast dental health, it would not be bubbly champagne or sugary soda or sticky fruit juice.
It would be a simple, very inexpensive beverage, and easily available from your own kitchen tap: fresh, cool, clean, health-giving, life-sustaining, often-forgotten water.
“Our bodies are made of 60% water, and staying hydrated helps your system distribute healthy nutrients, gets rid of waste, gives your skin a healthy glow and keeps your muscles moving”–and water is very good for your teeth!
Amazingly, drinking water, especially fluoridated water, strengthens your teeth. Let’s check out why. Then, share the facts about drinking water and teeth with our children.
Water and Fluoride: The Big Reason Dentists Love Tap Water
Water with fluoride strengthens teeth. You probably already know that drinking water with fluoride helps prevent cavities, not only in children but also in adults. However, do you know the story behind the research for this modern fact of science?
“A modern-day tale of two cities shows what a difference fluoride makes, especially in community water systems. In 2011, the Canadian city of Calgary stopped adding fluoride to its water. Curious about the impact, researchers compared Calgary second graders with kids in the same age group in Edmonton, a Canadian city that has had fluoridated water since 1967. Their research, published in the February 2016 journal Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology, found children in non-fluoridated Calgary had more tooth decay than children in the city with uninterrupted fluoridation.”
Water and Fluoride Ride Together: A Few Fun Fluoridated Facts!
At Dentistry For Children, we like our families to understand a little more than the average amount of information about Fluoride. So here is a mini-primer to give you the secrets of this great health-giving mineral, beloved by teeth with every sip of water.
1. This is a natural mineral, and you find it in all natural water, even the oceans of the world.
2. Some parents are surprised to learn it can reduce cavities in children and adults.
3. Even before the decay is visible to the human eye, fluoride helps repair it. Getting to it in such early stages is a real plus!
4. Fluoride makes teeth stronger because enamel can absorb it. Fluoride goes right to work, rejuvenating enamel with missing calcium and phosphorous. This hardens teeth; we call it remineralization. Fluoride also acts as a preventative so demineralization does not get out of control.
Water–Cleansing Refreshment for Your Mouth—No Acid or Residue!
Juice, soda and even sports drinks leave a residue of sugar on your teeth. Water does not! At Dentistry for Children, we teach even the smallest tykes about the sugar bugs that love eating sugar and producing nasty acid. It is the acid these bacteria make that eats into the beautiful enamel shell of your teeth.
Did you know these drinks often have phosphoric, citrus or malic acid actually added to them and they are an added threat for destroying the enamel of your teeth.
Every toast you make with water, every swallow you take cleans away food particles and residue. Likewise, water “dilutes the acids produced by the bacteria in your mouth.”
Oh, No, drinking water does not mean you do not have to brush your teeth. Brush twice a day for two minutes.
Remember that as you go through your day, a few sips of water occasionally can help you prevent cavities.
Water—On the Front Line of the War Against Dry Mouth!
It surprises some people that saliva is a defense against tooth decay. Plus, it helps you swallow and not only brings you fluoride, but also washes calcium and phosphate over your precious enamel. Insufficient water deprives your mouth of a healthy amount of saliva, and you miss out on all those great minerals.
When your saliva supply runs low, dry mouth may put you at risk for tooth decay. Drinking water regularly lowers your risk of dry mouth and protects your teeth and mouth from dry mouth.
Water: It’s Calorie-Free
Have you ever noticed that almost every diet out there requires you to drink more water? Apparently big weight losers know drinking water dissolves a few pounds.
Water certainly does not have any calories. We love it in almost every style: cool, frosty, icy. However, be careful about crunching ice. Just enjoy tiny chips of it. Dissolve them; don’t crunch them. As the ADA says, “Use it for chilling, not chewing.”
In some parts of the world, cultures still struggle to have clean, pure water. We feel fortunate to have the life-giving, tooth-protecting elixer right at our fingertips at the kitchen tap. All we need to do is teach our children to make it their preferred beverage.