5 Ways That Having a Dry Mouth Is Bad for Your Oral Health

Did you know that as much as 60% of your body is made of water? And did you know that in order to function at optimal performance, your body needs an almost-constant supply of water? Every bodily function requires water. This includes your mouth. That's why dry mouth is so harmful to your oral health.

If you don't drink enough water, you likely have a dry mouth most of the time. This means that your oral health could suffer in some or all of the following ways.

1. Unhealthy Gums

Your mouth contains salivary glands. The salivary glands that affect your gums and teeth the most are situated behind your front, bottom teeth and above your upper molars. Saliva contains powerful enzymes that kill off harmful strains of oral bacteria.

But if you don't have enough water in your body, you won't produce enough saliva to benefit from those antibacterial enzymes. As a result, harmful bacterial organisms will be able to attack your gums. This will leave you susceptible to gum disease, which causes gum recession and can even cause the destruction of the bone that supports your teeth.

2. Brittle Teeth

Your saliva also contains valuable nutrients like calcium and phosphorous. Because of this, when in contact with your teeth, saliva helps to strengthen your tooth enamel. But the less saliva you have, the less mineral reinforcement your teeth will have available to them. This could cause them to become brittle over time.

3. Decaying Teeth

Since your saliva contains antibacterial agents that kill harmful oral bacteria, you need to ensure you provide your mouth with a steady supply of saliva. To do that, you need to drink more water. If your mouth is always dry, the bacteria that cause tooth decay will thrive. 

4. Plaque-prone Teeth

Oral bacteria also cause plaque, that unattractive, slimy film that forms on your teeth over the course of a day. And the more plaque you have on your teeth, the higher the chance that you will soon suffer from gum disease.

5. Stained Teeth

A saliva-rich mouth might not sound like a healthy or attractive prospect. But in a healthy mouth, saliva is a good thing. Saliva can help to wash away the food debris that is to blame for causing tooth stains. If you drink water regularly, you can help to keep your teeth looking white and clean.

To learn more, contact a dentist.