Does kissing prevent tooth decay?

This blog post will address the question, “does kissing prevent tooth decay?” and cover topics like is kissing good for your teeth, what research says, benefits of kissing on oral health and ways to prevent tooth decay other than kissing.

Does Kissing Prevent Tooth Decay?

Yes, kissing does prevent tooth decay. Kissing your partner generates a lot of saliva that washes away any food particles or  plaque deposits on the teeth surface and thus protects tooth decay.

Saliva produced while kissing neutralises the demineralising acids released by cavity-causing bacteria and therefore prevents enamel erosion resulting in protection of teeth against decay.

Kissing stimulates salivary glands and enhances stimulated salivary flow. Stimulated saliva so produced contains certain proteins such as lysozyme and lactoferrin that have significant antimicrobial properties, protecting the teeth from any decay or infection.

Is Kissing Good For Your Teeth?

Kissing is good for your teeth as kissing stimulates the salivary glands, producing saliva, a natural mouth cleanser, in larger quantities. 

Saliva washes away any food particles or food debris, preventing plaque deposition or cleaning away the plaque deposited and hence preventing the formation of cavities and tooth decay.

Kissing also keeps the mouth moist and prevents the food particles from sticking, not allowing any cavity-causing bacteria to attack and produce enamel demineralisation.

Preventing enamel demineralisation keeps the enamel strong and does not allow cavities to form.

What Does Research Say?

The published studies focus mostly on saliva and its benefits on oral health and not much has been studied with respect to kissing and its oral health benefits.

According to a research study published in the journal of American Dental Association, stimulated saliva flow reduces the incidence of dental caries.

An article published in the journal of American Dental Association reports saliva to have a remineralising effect on teeth, making teeth resistant to decay.

Overall, most of the studies have reported and concluded stimulated salivary flow to be effective in prevention of cavity formation and tooth decay.

The stimulated salivary flow is successfully achieved while kissing with passion and love and hence it can be concluded that kissing does play a role in keeping teeth free of cavities, decay and stain and hence make your teeth look whiter and stronger.

Benefits Of Kissing On Oral Health

Kissing may have a significant positive effect on oral health due to its saliva stimulating ability that may result in:

  • Normal pH maintenance – Stimulated saliva with the help of its acid neutralising components such as bicarbonate, phosphate and protein, helps maintain a normal pH of 6-7.5 in the oral cavity. This further prevents any damage to the enamel and keeps the teeth stronger.
  • Prevent enamel demineralisation – Stimulated saliva due to kissing contains a good amount of calcium hydroxyapatite which prevents demineralisation of enamel, resulting in cavity protection and natural whiter shade due to enamel being intact.
  • Enhanced protection from tooth decay and infection – Kissing stimulates salivary gland and enhances stimulated salivary flow. Stimulated saliva so produced contains certain proteins such as lysozyme and lactoferrin that have significant antimicrobial properties, protecting the teeth from any decay or infection.
  • Strong Body Defence/Immunity – There isn’t much research on how kissing may boost the body’s defence but surely it may increase the body’s resistance to certain germs.

Ways To Prevent Tooth Decay Other Than Kissing

Kissing is one of the ways of preventing tooth decay other than:


It is recommended by the American Dental Association (ADA) to  brush your teeth twice a day for two minutes each time with a toothpaste containing fluoride. 

It is recommended to brush your teeth twice a day, once in the morning, just after waking up and once at night, just before going to bed.

You must also clean your teeth and gums, each time after you have food but not with a toothbrush. Simple rinse with water is considered good for overall oral health and hygiene.

Following this tooth brushing habit will help you prevent cavity formation and tooth decay in the first place and also heal a small cavity naturally in its earliest stage.

NO To Tooth Brushing After Eating Acidic Foods

You must wait for 30 minutes to one hour after consumption of acidic foods and drinks. 

The acid in the food or drink otherwise may erode the enamel layer and regular habit may cause exposed dentin leading to pain and sensitivity and increased risk of developing cavities.

Fluoride Toothpaste

Fluoride can greatly help achieve oral and dental health by strengthening the tooth enamel, making it more resistant to tooth decay. 

Fluoride reduces the amount of acid produced by the bacteria on your mouth and thus prevents tooth decay.

Floss Daily

According to a study, flossing is highly effective in reducing the interproximal caries risk. 

Daily floss can help stimulate your gums and reduce plaque leading to lesser inflammation risk and increased healing process of the cavity in its earliest stage.

Consider Mouthwash

Therapeutic Mouthwashes contain ADA listed active ingredients such as fluoride, peroxide, essential oils, cetylpyridinium chloride, and chlorhexidine, preventing cavities from forming and naturally healing the formed cavity in its earliest stage.

Therapeutic mouthwashes, as the name suggests have therapeutic action and control dental conditions like gingivitis, tooth decay and periodontal diseases. They also help remove halitosis.

According to a research published in the journal of clinical medicine research, mouthwash containing chlorhexidine gluconate or cetylpyridinium chloride showed antimicrobial activity against most bacteria in the plaque biofilm.

Another study concluded that the chlorhexidine and cetylpyridinium chloride containing antiseptic mouthwashes had higher in-vitro antibacterial activity against streptococcus mutans, a bacteria found in the plaque biofilm.

Oil Pulling

In India, Oil pulling has been practiced traditionally since ages to improve oral hygiene and remove toxins from the body.

The practice of oil pulling involves swishing oil, sunflower or coconut oil, around in your mouth, keeping it for a few minutes and then spitting it out.

Yes it is traditional and now backed by several scientific studies.

A study concluded oil pulling using coconut oil to be an effective procedure in decreasing plaque formation and plaque induced gingivitis.

Similarly other studies have also found oil pulling to be an effective and safe procedure to reduce plaque accumulation and thus heal small cavities naturally.

Good Diet Rich In Calcium, Magnesium, Phosphorus And Vitamin D

Diet plays a crucial role in preventing cavity formation. Proper diet with less sugar and more calcium, may significantly decrease the risk of developing cavities.

However, a diet with frequent intake of sugar, starchy foods and acidic foods and drinks may increase the risk of dental cavities as they result in increased bacterial attack and thinning of enamel from demineralisation.

A research study concluded that consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages on a regular basis increases the chances of having dental caries.

Another study reported that all sugars can be fermented by the oral bacteria and are therefore a potential cause of cavities and tooth decay.

Foods rich in calcium, phosphorus, magnesium and vitamin D increases the tooth strength and their resistance against cavity forming bacteria.

A clinical trial reported vitamin D to be a prominent agent for caries prevention.

Study published in the journal of dental research, concluded that vitamin D is essential for lowering the risk of developing caries in children.

Hence, if you maintain good oral hygiene and still develop cavities, you need to check your diet and eating habits.

Visit Your Dentist Once Or Twice In A Year And Get A Dental Cleaning Done

Dental cleaning can help in removing the plaque and tartar and thus prevent decay or gum disease or periodontal disease of any type.

It is recommended to get your teeth cleaned by a dental hygienist or dentist every 3 months or twice a year with a gap of 6 months.

Dental cleaning has several benefits like:

  1. Halts the progression of gum and periodontal diseases
  1. Removes tartar and prevents initiation of periodontal infection
  1. Prevents halitosis or bad breath
  1. Helps maintain good oral hygiene and prevents tooth loss
  1. Prevents formation of pockets between teeth and gums
  1. Protects infection of the tooth and root
  1. Prevents tooth decay and cavity formation


This blog post addressed the topic, “Does kissing prevent tooth decay”. We understood about kissing being good for your teeth, what research says and the benefits of kissing on oral health. The article outlined ways to prevent tooth decay other than kissing.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQs): Does Kissing Prevent Tooth Decay

Does Cavity Always Indicate Bad Oral Hygiene?

No, cavities may not always mean bad hygiene. Cavity may even form in those who brush and floss daily and maintain good oral hygiene. 

Cavity may not always mean bad or poor oral hygiene and may be a result of incorrect brushing or flossing, or incorrect timing of brushing like just after acidic foods or drinks, or may also occur due to continuous use of highly abrasive toothpaste.

Can You Brush Away A Cavity?

No, a cavity is a permanent damage of the enamel layer that needs to be repaired by using filling materials like composite or porcelain or an amalgam.

Once you have a cavity, it is not possible to brush it away. However, it can be filled and prevented from further damaging your tooth.

Are cavities inevitable?

Cavities are not inevitable. There are few people who never get cavities in their lifetime. Brushing twice daily with correct technique and timing, flossing daily, cutting down on sugar, acidic and starchy foods and incorporating calcium, magnesium, phosphorus and vitamin D are effective ways to prevent cavities.

Is it possible to never get cavities?

Yes, it is possible that you will never get cavities in your lifetime. Taking good care of your oral health and hygiene is crucial in such cases with daily brushing twice, flossing once and using therapeutic mouthwash occasionally.

Research studies have shown that increasing the number of times you brush your teeth with gentle strokes, significantly decreases the chances of getting cavities.

Does kissing make you healthier?

Kissing definitely makes you healthier by reducing your stress levels and lowering your blood pressure.

According to a study, kissing not only helps lowering your stress levels but also helps improve your serum cholesterol levels and enhances your relationship bond.

Kissing triggers the brain to release hormones that make you happy, satisfied, less anxious and more healthier.


16 Reasons to Smooch: How Kissing Benefits Your Health – Healthline. (2018)

Stookey, G. K. (2008). The effect of saliva on dental caries. The Journal of the American Dental Association, 139, 11S-17S.

DePaola, D. P. (2008). Saliva: The precious body fluid. The Journal of the American Dental Association, 139, 5S-6S.

Iorgulescu G. (2009). Saliva between normal and pathological. Important factors in determining systemic and oral health. Journal of medicine and life, 2(3), 303–307.

The Risks and Benefits of Kissing on Oral Health – Colgate

The Tooth Decay Process: How to Reverse It and Avoid a Cavity. (2018)

5 Amazingly Simple Things You Can Do to Prevent Cavities. (2017)

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