Fun Facts About Spit
Let’s talk about spit. Yes, the stringy, squishy, clear stuff that comes out of your mouth when you’re sleeping or really hungry. People also call it “saliva.”
You may not have given spit very much thought. You can make it in your mouth without really trying. You probably take its presence for granted in your life. It’s like a thumb or a toe or a kneecap. It’s just something you have.
Spit is actually pretty amazing. Do you have any idea how much spit you produce in a day? Or what the primary function of spit is? Or what else spit is made of besides water? Read on to learn all that and more.
How Much Spit Do I Make in a Day?
You may have noticed you always seem to have spit in your mouth. That’s because your body generates a whole lot of it, almost an entire quart a day! That’s the equivalent of four cups. In one year, the average person will make enough spit to fill two bathtubs.
What Is Spit’s Primary Function?
Spit does a lot of beneficial things for our body:
- It keeps your mouth lubricated so you can swallow.
- It makes your gums moist.
- It protects your teeth by washing away decay-causing bacteria.
Perhaps most importantly, it aids in your digestion. Saliva starts the process of breaking down your food by softening it. The food then slides along your esophagus to the rest of its digestion journey.
How Spit Helps Your Mouth Heal
Have you ever gotten a cut inside your mouth? It hurts, doesn’t it? You may have trouble opening your mouth wide, and you feel like screaming when acid from orange juice or other food touches the cut. Spit plays a healing role for these nasty little annoyances. Saliva has proteins used by the body to patch up the wound, and it keeps the area wet, which assists the cells doing the repair work.
You Make Less Spit When You’re Scared
Have you ever heard the expression “my mouth ran dry?” People say it when they are in a frightening situation — and it’s completely correct. Your nervous system, which controls the flow of saliva, will slow function if it detects a “flight or fight” situation.
What Is in My Spit?
As you may have guessed, spit is mostly made up of water. But there are also small amounts of vitamins, hormones, minerals and protein in your saliva. It contains traces of whatever has been in your mouth recently, too, such as food or, we hope, toothpaste!
Spread the Word About Spit
Now that you know a bit more about spit, you can share these fun facts with your friends. Impress them with your knowledge — but don’t try to fill a bathtub with saliva. Trust us, your parents will not be pleased.