Benefits to Stay Hydrated for the Sake of Your Oral Health


Maintaining good oral health habits is crucial for overall well-being, and staying hydrated by drinking water plays a significant role in supporting a healthy mouth. Alongside regular brushing and flossing, incorporating healthy habits like drinking water can go a long way in promoting excellent oral hygiene.

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Stay Hydrated: Oral Health Benefits of Drinking Water

You’ve probably heard that drinking water can keep your body healthy, help clear up your skin, rejuvenate your muscles, get rid of waste, etc. There are so many benefits to stay hydrated and many of them are widely known. Essentially, there’s no better drink than water, and it makes sense with our bodies being 60% water.

What sometimes isn’t known is how great drinking water is for your oral health. A simple and easy way to help keep your teeth healthy and strong is to drink more water! There are plenty of reasons to drink water and knowing how big of an effect water can have on our oral health makes it even more imperative to staying hydrated by drinking water every day. Drinking water is not only essential for overall health but also plays a significant role in maintaining good oral health. Here are some ways in which water benefits your teeth and oral hygiene:

  1. Neutralizes Acids: Water helps to neutralize the acids produced by bacteria in the mouth. When we eat or drink sugary or acidic substances, the bacteria in our mouths produce acid as a byproduct, which can erode tooth enamel. Drinking water can help wash away some of these acids and minimize their harmful effects on our teeth.
  2. Promotes Saliva Production: Staying hydrated encourages the production of saliva. Saliva is crucial for oral health because it helps to wash away food particles, plaque, and bacteria that can lead to cavities and gum disease. Saliva also contains minerals that aid in remineralizing teeth and preventing tooth decay.
  3. Prevents Dry Mouth: Dry mouth, also known as xerostomia, is a condition in which there is an insufficient production of saliva. This can lead to various oral health issues as saliva is essential for protecting the teeth and gums. Drinking water can help combat dry mouth by promoting saliva flow.
  4. Reduces Bad Breath: Bad breath or halitosis can be caused by bacteria in the mouth. Drinking water helps to flush out food particles and bacteria, reducing the sources of bad breath.
  5. No Sugars or Acids: Unlike sugary beverages like soda, fruit juices, or sports drinks, water does not contain sugars or acids that can harm tooth enamel and contribute to tooth decay.
  6. Cost-Effective and Convenient: Water is easily accessible and often available for free, making it a cost-effective and convenient option for maintaining oral health.
  7. Helps with Orthodontic Care: For individuals with braces or other orthodontic appliances, drinking water can help to dislodge food particles that may get stuck in and around the braces, reducing the risk of decay and gum problems.
  8. Calorie-Free: Water is calorie-free, making it an excellent choice for staying hydrated without adding extra calories or sugars to your diet, which can be harmful to your teeth and overall health.

Remember that while water offers these great benefits for oral health, it’s still important to maintain a good oral hygiene routine, which includes regular brushing, flossing, and dental check-ups. Drinking water is a simple and accessible way to support your oral health and complement your efforts in keeping your teeth strong and healthy..

Water is indeed one of the best drinks for your overall and oral health. Its numerous benefits make it an easy and effective way to support strong teeth and a healthy mouth.

Related Article: Schedule Your Dental Exam with your Downtown Dentist Kansas City

Stay Hydrated: 10 Reasons Kids Need to Drink Water

Staying hydrated is crucial for children for the same reasons it is important for adults, as well as some additional factors that are particularly relevant to a child’s growth and development.

Parents and caregivers should ensure that children have access to water throughout the day, especially during periods of physical activity, hot weather, and when they are unwell. Encouraging children to drink water and modeling good hydration habits can help instill the importance of staying hydrated for their overall health and well-being. As a general guideline, the amount of water a child needs can vary based on factors such as age, activity level, and weather conditions, so it’s essential to pay attention to individual needs and provide water accordingly.

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Here are 10 key reasons why it is important for children to stay hydrated:

Hydration Benefit #1: Water Eliminates Dehydration

Water helps kids stay hydrated–which is important for their brains to work and for them to stay healthy! Dehydration means that your body doesn’t have enough water to function properly. Seventy-five percent of people (including children) are chronically dehydrated.

Even mild dehydration will:

  • cause your child to feel grumpy or tired
  • slow down your child’s metabolism as much as 3% and cause fatigue
  • give your child headaches

The human body has no stored water to draw on during dehydration so it’s vitally important that your child drinks water throughout the day.

Suggestion: Dehydration can happen very quickly—keep water with you in the car for thirsty kids. If they play sports or are involved in strenuous extra-curricular activities, send them with plenty of water in their backpacks.

If your children come home from school grumpy or tired—give them a glass of water.

Hydration Benefit #2: Water Helps Kids Suffering from Asthma and Allergies

Your children need water for their cells to grow. As they grow, 75% of the cell volume must be filled with water. This is one reason why children develop asthma and allergies during the growth stage of their physical development–they don’t have enough water for their body systems to function. Some research indicates that asthma can be caused by chronic dehydration and by increasing water and adding a bit of salt to the tongue, asthma coughing disappears.

Kids are also susceptible to allergies if they increase their food intake but not their water intake.

Suggestion: If you have a child who suffers from asthma or allergies, water obviously will help. Kids with allergies should drink a glass of water BEFORE eating food. And kids with asthma need to drink more water. They also need to stop drinking sodas containing caffeine and reduce their orange juice consumption which can trigger an allergic reaction in some children.

Hydration Benefit #3: Water Lessens Hunger Pains

In a University of Washington study, it was discovered that dieters who drink one glass of water before bed will shut down late-night hunger pains by almost 100%! Drinking water helps separate the feelings of thirst and hunger. Thirty-seven percent of Americans suffer from a very weak thirst mechanism. In fact, it is so weak that it is often mistaken for hunger. Many kids and parents who feel hungry are really in need of water.

Suggestion: Does your child get up at night complaining of hunger or thirst? If so, either give him/her a glass of water an hour before bedtime or even 30 minutes before bed.  If they get up feeling hungry or thirsty—give them another glass of water. You’re probably thinking, “they are going to be up all night going to the bathroom.” Possibly, but if your child’s body is in need of water, the water they drink will be used to replenish their organs and cells.

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Hydration Benefit #4: Water Reduces Fatigue and Helps Kids Learn

When your kids are thirsty, they get tired very easily. In fact, studies show that not replenishing the body with water is the #1 trigger of daytime fatigue.

Kids in school need water to help:

  • It is needed for sustained focus energy
  • Keep their brains alive and working
  • Water gives a child electrical energy for brain functions, particularly thinking.
  • Water can also help prevent attention deficit disorder in children (and adults). In fact, kids who drink plenty of water, their attention spans increase.
  • Water integrates mind and body functions. It helps kids and teens with the desire to make goals and have a purpose. Hard to believe that water can do this–but research indicates it can and does!

Suggestion: Send bottled water with your children to school. Let their teachers know exactly why you are doing this. If they don’t understand, encourage them to read the research connecting water to learning.

Hydration Benefit #5: Drink Water to Ease Growing Pains & Back and Joint Pains

Back, joint and muscle pain are not relegated to the aging. It can also happen to your kids. Growing pains are common among children. Preliminary research indicates that 8-10 glasses of water a day can significantly ease back, joint and muscle pain for up to 80% of sufferers.

Suggestion: If your kids are experiencing growing pains, give them plenty of water throughout the day and a glass of water about one hour prior to them going to bed (so they can empty their bladder before they nod off). It should help.

Hydration Benefit #6: Drinking Water Helps with Short-term Memory

Did you know that a mere 2% drop in body water can trigger fuzzy short-term memory? It can also cause kids to have problems understanding basic math, and have difficulty focusing on a computer screen or printed page in a book. Drinking water every day can help prevent memory loss well into old age.

Suggestion: Before starting their homework, make certain your kids have had a big glass of water to drink. And as mentioned above, send them to school with a bottle of water. It’s necessary for their memories and learning.

Hydration Benefit #7: Water Decreases the Risk of Certain Cancers

Drinking water can help ward off certain cancers. For instance:

  • Drinking 5 glasses of water daily help to decrease the risk of colon cancer by 45%
  • Drinking 5 glasses of water each day can slash the risk of breast cancer by 79%
  • When a person drinks at least 5 glasses of water a day, they are 50% less likely to develop bladder cancer

Water also helps to normalize the blood-manufacturing system in the bone marrow which helps prevent childhood leukemia and lymphoma.

Suggestion: Although some of these forms of cancer are not cancers common in children, it’s a good idea to get your kids in the habit of drinking plenty of water every day. It just may help prevent certain cancers when they are adults because water keeps the immune system working at peak performance and can fight infections and cancer cells where they are formed.

Related Article: Regular Dental Exams Prevent Decay and Health Issues

Hydration Benefit #8: Sip or Guzzle?

If your child sips water throughout the day, they will keep their systems hydrated and their abilities to learn and function will substantially increase. If they guzzle water (drinking it very rapidly) they will cleanse their systems. Both are helpful for their bodies and minds.

Suggestion: Either sipping or guzzling water is good for your child’s health.

Hydration Benefit #9: Drinking Soda, Juice or Milk Doesn’t Count Toward Water Intake

Many parents think that as long as their child is getting some form of liquid (milk, juice, soda) in their systems, they will be hydrated. This is partially correct. However, sodas and juices are loaded with sugar and sugar drains water from the colon and can cause constipation and/or diarrhea. Plus, the sodium in sodas increases dehydration. Kids don’t need excess salt or sugar in their diets. It impedes their ability to learn. They need water.

Suggestion: Make water your family’s #1 beverage choice. You’ll be glad you did. You will notice your children having sustained, focused energy; their brains will work better and more efficiently which all translates into a healthier more positive learning experience.

Hydration Benefit #10: Drinking Water Helps Clear Teen Skin

When your kids get to be teens, they will be concerned about their skin. Having healthy, acne-free skin is important for teens and their self-esteem. There are many reasons for teen acne, but several things that can help is drinking plenty of water, giving up sodas and eating plenty of fruits and veggies. Fruits and veggies are loaded with water and will help clean out the cells.

Drinking water every day will help improve your teen’s skin by:

  • eliminating toxins from the body
  • flushing out the system
  • hydrating the skin
  • making the skin smoother
  • decreasing the effects of aging

These tips and additional information to help you stay hydrated can be found in the article titled: 10 Amazing Benefits of Drinking Water and How it Makes Kids Smarter

We Can Help You Have a Healthy Smile in Kansas City

Dental health professionals, such as those at the offices of Thomas L. Anderson, DDS and Associates, are valuable resources for addressing any questions or concerns about oral health. Regular dental check-ups and appointments are essential for preventive care, early detection of any issues, and professional cleaning, which can help keep your teeth and gums in top condition.

Remember, oral health is an integral part of your overall health, and a strong foundation of good oral habits can lead to a bright and healthy smile for a lifetime. If you have any dental-related questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to reach out to your dental care provider or schedule a dental check-up to get personalized advice and guidance.

Contact us today to schedule your dental appointment and meet with our skilled dentists at one of our three conveniently located dental office locations within the Kansas City area, including Lee’s Summit / Independence, the Country Club Plaza and Downtown Kansas City. The gentle dentists and expert team at Thomas L. Anderson and Associates look forward to working with you to treat your dental emergency, achieve proper oral health and a beautiful smile that will last a lifetime. If you have any questions about your dental insurance benefits, please do not hesitate to contact us.  We are happy to review your policy! Please give us a call today to schedule an appointment and become part of our dental family.