Thursday, May 28, 2015

Staying Hydrated is Important for your Overall and Oral Health

            The average person is made up of around 60% water, and losing just 1.5% can put you near the tipping point of mild dehydration. Below we will discuss some of the ramifications of dehydration.

  • It gives you bad breath: When you’re busy at work or running errands, you can easily forget to drink water throughout the day. When you are dehydrated, you have decreased saliva flow. Your saliva has important antibacterial qualities, and a lack of saliva can allow the wrong type of bacteria to proliferate and cause bad breath.

  • It makes you crave sugar: When dehydrated, your body craves carbohydrates and sugars to replenish your glycogen and energy.

  • It can hurt your workout: 2% dehydration can cause a 10% decrease in performance.

  • Dehydration hurts your skin: The best way to hydrate your skin is from the inside out. And depending on your workouts or caffeine intake, you may need even more water than usual.

  • It can affect your ability to drive: New studies indicate that being dehydrated can affect your reaction time and even double the number of driving errors. So it may be worth a few restroom breaks to avoid accidents.

  • It makes you tired: When dehydrated your blood pressure drops, heart rate increases, and blood flow to the brain slows. All of these can make you tired.

  • It worsens your mood: When you’re dehydrated, the neurological effects can cause irritability.

  • It can give you the chills: Less blood flow to the extremities and the skin, which makes it more difficult to control your body temperature.

  • It can cause muscle cramps: When dehydrated, the body keeps fluid away from muscles and anything that isn’t vital.

  • It can cause headaches: It relates to chemical changes that result and less blood flow to smaller vessels in the brain.

  • It may constipate you: Proper water levels help your digestive tract function properly. Hydration may not cure constipation in all cases, but it will not hurt.

The bottom line is staying hydrated is essential to maintaining good overall health. Try to make a conscious effort to drink water throughout the day and it will hopefully make you feel better!

For more tips on good dental health, visit

Lee T. Brown, DDS

Brown and Kupper, DDS Inc.

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