• By Jessica DeGore
  • In Uncategorized
  • February 26, 2020

Tap Into Better Oral Health

Another reason for kids to hydrate with water instead of sugar sweetened beverages.

You may know that reaching for water instead of a sugar-sweetened beverage is a nutritious choice, but did you know that it could protect your smile? Everyone has harmful bacteria in their mouths that feed on the sugars that we consume. Bacteria get energy from these sugars but, in the process, produce an acid that is damaging to our teeth. Water is wonderful because, when fluorinated, water does not contain any sugars AND protects your teeth!

When it comes to staying hydrated and eliminating added sugars, any plain unsweetened water will do.  When it comes to making your teeth stronger and more resistant to acid to prevent cavities, fluoridated water is key.  While there is some fluoride in foods, consumption of fluids provides 75% of the fluoride intake in the United States.1

Attitudes and habits are established at an early age and are critical to maintaining good oral health throughout life.  With a few tips and tricks, you’ll be the role model in your own home.  Try keeping a refillable water bottle with you to model a simple healthy hydrating habit. Healthier smiles can lead to healthier futures.

  Adequate Intake (mg/day) Upper Limit   mg/day
Infants: 0-6 months .01 .7
Infants 7-12 months .5 .9
1-3y .7 1.3
4-8y 1 2.2
9-13 2 10
14-18 3 10




Caroline Passerrello is a Spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and an Instructor at the University of Pittsburgh in the Master’s level Dietitian Nutritionist Program.  You can reach Caroline on facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CarolineWestLLC/ and https://www.facebook.com/PittNutrition/

  1. American Dental Hygienists’ Association. Fluoride Facts.  https://www.adha.org/resources-docs/7253_Fluoride_Facts.pdf.  Accessed February 11,
  2. American Dental Association. February is National Children’s Dental Health Month.  org/ncdhm.  Accessed February 11,, 2020.
  3. Institute of Medicine (US) Standing Committee on the Scientific Evaluation of Dietary Reference Intakes. Washington (DC): National Academies Press (US); 1997.
  4. American Dental Association. Sugary Drinks. https://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/nutrition/food-tips/sugary-drinks. Accessed February 11,