Ditch the Bottle to Save Your Teeth!
It’s great to see you, Florida! The office of Clearwater Dental Associates is back with another informational blog to help you better take care of your oral health. In our last blog we wrote about the wonders fluoride provides for preventive care. Fluoride is so effective in the fight against tooth decay that 72% of the public water sources are fluoridated, a practice that began in Grand Rapids, MI in 1945.
Despite the oral health benefits of fluoridated water, in recents years tooth decay among children has been on the rise. The primary reason for this rise is the popularity of bottled water, which does not contain enough fluoride to help in the prevention of tooth decay.
Here at Clearwater Dental Associates, it is our goal to help you stay healthy by providing you with regular access to information that will aid you in your prevent care efforts. That is why we want to take this time to look at the downside to bottled water and how it can affect your oral health.
Why Is Bottled Water So Popular?
The convenience of bottled water is undeniable. Right there in the store cooler next to the sodas and sports drinks, bottled water doesn’t seem like such a bad choice, and in that situation, it’s not. Drinking bottled water every now and then is not bad for your teeth, especially when you are drinking it instead of a sugary soft drink. But if you are drinking bottled water at home, where fluoridated is readily available, then your oral health could end up paying the price.
One of the reasons many people opt for bottled water over the tap water from their own faucets is that they have been misled into believing bottled water is somehow healthier than public water.
Some say, “At least I know what’s in this bottled water. Nobody knows what’s in tap water.” However, the opposite is true. The FDA regulations on what bottled water companies have to disclose about their product are far less stringent than the what the government demands of public water sources. Quite simply, the water company has to account for everything that goes into the public water supply, and private water companies do not have to do the same with their bottled water. In fact, some companies admit to using public tap water as the basis for their own product. In truth, when it comes to bottled water, you can’t be quite sure what you are getting.
Another great misconception is that water from “natural” sources are somehow healthier than public tap water. But the truth is, natural water sources, like rivers, streams, and springs can be a risky venture. In fact, it is very dangerous to drink from random springs and streams. For one thing, they will often be fed by runoff and groundwater than has been polluted by animal waste, for instance streams near cattle farms have likely come into contact with a good deal of cow feces.
Even if a stream isn’t polluted, it can still contain microbes, organisms, and parasites that are dangerous to humans. Hopefully, any bottles water company would take steps to ensure that this isn’t the case with their water, but you essentially have to take their word for it.
The Environmental Cost of Bottled Water
The biggest issue with bottled water may not even be the oral health complications. The packaging could be the real problem. All those plastic bottles have to go somewhere, and often they will end up in thrash. Plastic bottles do not biograde at a particularly fast rate, so they stick around for years, maybe even centuries, after they have been thrown out. As you can likely see, this is a major problem for the planet and the future generations that will inherit it.
Come to Our Office in Clearwater, FL
The last thing we want to do is dissuade any of you from drinking water. Even drinking fluoride free bottled water is better than drinking sugary sodas and sports drinks. But we do want to make sure that you are making your beverage choices based on accurate information and not marketing ploys and misinformation.
Come see us at Clearwater Dental Associates and we will help you decide how best to protect your oral health and how to save your smile from the damages of tooth decay.
Contact us today to schedule an appointment.