‘At Goliad dental, we like to think of dental health holistically, or at least consider all the different ways our patients can keep their teeth healthy. One way: drink water, because it probably has fluoride in it. Did you know that the Center for Disease Control calls water fluoridation one of the ten great public […]
Now don’t get the idea that by swishing a swallow of tap water around your mouth, your teeth will magically be free from bacteria, but it’s certainly a good start—one that should be followed with good, consistent oral hygiene and regular dental cleanings—to healthy teeth
. When you ingest fluoridated water, you create low levels of fluoride in your saliva. The fluoride slows demineralization of tooth enamel while simultaneously increasing the rate at which it remineralizes during the early stages of a cavity. This is the main reason why we always suggest having a drink of water after you finish a soda—fluoridated water will interfere with the acid and bacteria harming your teeth, giving you time to brush your teeth before any damage sets in. That might sound melodramatic, but if you’ve ever watched one of those YouTube
videos of a tooth dissolving in cola over time, you know sugary beverages are pretty terrible for your teeth. In any case, fluoride in drinking water is a weapon in the fight against tooth decay (and root canals).
Is fluoride in water absolutely necessary? Some people argue that it isn’t, and that fluoridation therapy can actually be harmful. In truth, over-fluoridation can give your teeth a noticeable “striated” look, of horizontal discoloration or even stains that are hard to clean, but it is otherwise harmless. In many cases, over-fluoridation can be linked to swallowing inordinate amounts of toothpaste (more than the residual amount you swallow when you brush your teeth), rather than the amount of fluoride in drinking water. And certainly, there is in fact such a thing as acute fluoride poisoning, marked by varying degrees of nausea, but you’d seriously have to eat a lot of toothpaste to reach this harmful limit.
Even if your water has a reasonable and helpful amount of fluoride, your teeth will still benefit the most from frequent, consistent brushing and flossing and regularly scheduled, professional cleanings. If you need a checkup or a teeth cleaning, give Goliad a call.’