Your doctor says it. Your dentist says it. You need to be drinking more water. But do you still find it difficult to consume the recommended amount of water each day? Many adults struggle to properly hydrate everyday, which can lead to a variety of far-reaching effects, including drowsiness, dry skin, headaches, dizziness, increased heart rate, fevers and more. Unfortunately, failing to properly hydrate can also lead to a host of dental problems as well. That is because chronic dry mouth which is often caused by dehydration can allow plaque bacteria to more quickly calcify onto the teeth, leading to potential acidic erosion responsible for cavity development and also irritation that can cause gum disease. So if you want to prevent dental problems, it is really crucial that you start drinking (or keep drinking) enough water each day.
Why Drinking Plenty of Water Does a Smile Good
You probably already know you should be drinking plenty of water during the day, but this becomes especially crucial during the warm summer months. Here are a few things you might not have known about water, and how it impacts your oral health:
- While eight glasses has long been considered the general recommendation of how much water to drink each day, that figure actually varies greatly based on how much you weigh, how long you are spending outside, and how much you are perspiring.
- One of the reasons water is so essential to oral health, is because it helps you produce saliva, which is a natural plaque fighter. Many people don’t realize this, but saliva makes it more difficult for bacteria to adhere to the surface of your teeth, which can help in cavity prevention.
- Certain health conditions and medications can make it difficult to stay properly hydrated. In fact, certain medications are known to cause chronic dry mouth.
- You should talk to your dentist at your next checkup and cleaning if you are experiencing dry mouth, no matter how much water you drink. Untreated, dry mouth can lead to cavities, gum disease and other dental problems.