The Sacramento Dentistry Group Replies: Can You Brush With Tap Water?

A client recently asked the question of whether tap water was safe for use when brushing their teeth. This article addresses this question and points out the benefits of tap water for both drinking and oral hygiene.

The water bottling and purification industry has created significant fears regarding the safety of tap water in the United States. Such concerns are unfounded and based strictly on marketing. With the exception of the well-publicized incident in Flint, Michigan, municipal water supplies in the U.S. are provided under very stringently followed standards. Every year, water authorities provide access to the testing result of the drinking water in their area. In general, unless advised otherwise or when visiting a foreign country with unsafe water, tap water is healthy to drink and use for brushing teeth. Sacramento dentists have regularly recommended that patients use inexpensive and environmentally sound tap water as their primary water source.

Added Benefits of Tap Water

In many areas, tap water is also fluoridated. In some locales, this may be due to natural deposits of mineralized fluoride in streams, rivers, lakes, reservoirs or underground wells. In other municipalities, the fluoride is added in very specific amounts. And in some locations, where there is an excess of fluoride content, the water utility even removes excess fluoride so that the levels do not exceed recommended maximums. The result is a water supply that’s safe and good for teeth.

For all ages, fluoride speeds up the repair of minimally damaged tooth enamel by acting as a catalyst for remineralization with calcium and phosphorus. The resulting repair is actually stronger than the original enamel and thus less subject to decay and wear. For youths, the presence of fluoride in the water guarantees stronger teeth than would form naturally, resulting in fewer lifetime cavities. Long-term studies have consistently demonstrated the safety and benefits of fluoride used in the minor quantities found in toothpastes, water supplies and mouthrinses. So people save money, and their teeth, by using tap water for brushing their teeth and for hydration.

For more information about the benefits and history of fluoride use in dentistry, visit the website of the Sacramento Dentistry Group at You may also speak with a qualified member of their staff by calling 916-538-6900. 

Source: Sacramento Dentistry Group