Probiotics for oral health
Also known as friendly bacteria, these live microorganisms called probiotics can benefit your health. Researchers are now looking into probiotics for oral health and have observed that they are a natural and effective way to get rid of plaque and bad breath, as well as gum disease.
Including probiotic foods when eating can help to tackle the progression of an oral disease-causing infection. Here, we take a look at oral health probiotics and what research has to say about their positive effects.
Do oral probiotics work?
One of the most common questions that people ask is – WHAT ARE ORAL PROBIOTICS?
Probiotics work by seeking out pathogens or microbes known to produce infection. These are the culprits that cause many oral health issues in families today. The Journal of Oral Microbiology released a study to describe the process by which probiotics help to keep pathogens from causing problems through different methods.
They are friendly bacteria that help to enhance your immune system while keeping these microbes from linking up with tissues in your body. They can also slow pathogen growth or kill them entirely through the creation of agents that prevent these pathogens from surviving.
According to the Journal of Indian Society Periodontology, they have inflammation reduction properties that help to neutralize the harmful effects caused by the microbes. Let’s also not forget to mention that probiotics assist in the stimulation of bone formation. This is great because it can fix deteriorating bones from gum disease.
The benefits of probiotics for oral health
When it comes to probiotics for oralhealth, they also have the potential to boost your dental condition. Here are some ways that oral probiotics for teeth are beneficial –
- Prevent plaque
One of the top oral probiotics benefits is that it helps to prevent plaque. Some of the bacteria in your mouth are known to cause plaque. But a 2016 study revealed that the A12 bacteria strain helps to fight Streptococcus mutans, notorious for causing cavities. Streptococcus mutans facilitate the conversion of sugar into lactic acid which makes your mouth acidic enough to cause plaque and cavities. In that 2016 study, the two bacteria types were grown together but the A12 bacteria inhibited the Streptococcus mutans.
- Fights candida overgrowth
Your mouth has naturally-occurring fungi known as candida which can become a problem if you have an unbalanced oral microbiome. Candida overgrowth is linked with an oral health condition known as oral thrush. If you notice white spots on tongue or gums, it could be a sign of oral thrush.
But oral probiotics for oral thrush can help. To tackle this condition, lower your sugar and carbohydrate intake. Also, ensure that you use high-quality oral probiotics. If you work on your diet, it will inhibit candida growth because the candida microbes become deprived of adequate food. Also, any candida microbes left will be crowded out by the influx of the probiotics.
- Oral probiotics for tonsil stones
When mucus, as well as bacteria and food particles, clog the small pockets on your tonsils, you could develop tonsil stones. Poor dental hygiene is usually responsible for this condition. The buildup of the trapped materials can lead to soreness and swelling which causes many people to have them removed. One way to combat tonsil stones is to use oral probiotics. You can find probiotics contained in yogurt. Eating this kind of yogurt could help fight these harmful bacteria.
- Probiotics for bad breath
There are certain bacteria in your gut, as well as your mouth that are responsible for causing bad breath. Different studies have been conducted to determine whether probiotics for bad breath is possible. An antimicrobial mouthwash was administered to 23 people in one study. Afterward, they were either given a supplement containing the probiotic Streptococcus salivarius or a placebo for 3 days. The findings revealed that about 85% of the probiotic recipients saw a greater amount of bad breath-inducing bacteria reduced.
- Prevent oral cancer
In 2013, a study was conducted which revealed that Lactobacillus salivarius helps to lower oral cancer in rats. To determine the role of probiotics in oral cancer, more studies are necessary to reach a conclusion.
- Manage gingivitis symptoms
Oral probiotics for gum disease can also help in cases like gingivitis. You could be experiencing immune balance if you notice that you have bleeding gums whenever you brush your teeth. The introduction of oral probiotics may potentially help to treat bleeding gums while lowering your risk of gum disease. The symptoms of gingivitis (swollen gums, sensitive teeth, etc.) may be reduced according to a 2006 study, thanks to probiotics.
In that study, 59 participants who had gingivitis were administered a supplement. The supplement was either a placebo or Lactobacillus reuteri, a probiotic. At the end of two weeks, the researchers saw that the participants that were given larger amounts of probiotics had a significant reduction in their gingivitis symptoms. They also found that the probiotics participants did not have as much plaque.
- Reduce gum disease inflammation
Probiotics may also assist in the management of gum disease inflammation according to research. In 2007, the findings from a study revealed that the probiotic Lactobacillus brevis helped to decrease inflammation in patients. Drinking probiotic milk every day may also help to reduce oral inflammation according to another study.
Choosing the right oral probiotic
If you are contemplating going for a probiotic for oral health, you want to find one that has a high strain count. These strain counts are usually measured in colony forming units known as CFUs. But do not forget that the CFU and strain counts are usually lower for oral probiotics when compared with regular probiotics. You also want to look out for strains that provide a wide range of benefits. Some of these strains include streptococcus salivarius M18 and more.
NatureWise Oral Probiotic chewables are a great chewable oral probiotic that is easily purchased on Amazon. This one can be used on children and adults. I have heard great feedback about this particular brand.
Here is what NatureWise has to say about their product:
SCIENCE-BACKED BENEFITS: Featuring 12 oral probiotic strains — 3x more than the leading brand — including BLIS K12 & M18, which are clinically shown to promote dental and upper respiratory health.*
ADVANCED ORAL PROTECTION: Strong clinical research shows that dental probiotics can help strengthen your natural resistance to invasive oral bacteria that are often responsible for common problems with teeth, gums, and breath.*
UPPER RESPIRATORY IMMUNITY: Oral bacteria can also influence upper respiratory health. BLIS K12 has been clinically studied in both children and adults and shown to significantly boost ear, nose, and throat immune defenses.*
NATURAL PROBIOTIC SUPPLEMENT: Our chewable oral probiotics are non-GMO, vegetarian, and gluten free with a natural, sugar free mint flavor and no artificial additives, colors, or flavors. All NatureWise supplements are made in USA-based facilities that comply to the strictest cGMP standards and third party tested for purity and quality.
GUARANTEED VIABLE: Our shelf stable probiotic supplements are safe for shipping and guaranteed to remain viable up to the expiration date when stored at a comfortable room temperature, or even longer if refrigerated.
AWARD-WINNING PROBIOTICS: NatureWise Oral Health Chewable Probiotics won the Editor’s Choice Award in the Probiotics category at SupplySide West 2018.
Your oral microbiome must be in top shape to positively impact your health in general. We hope that you will try some probiotics for oral health soon. Let us know in the comments which brand you enjoy. Keep in mind that your body deserves the best and keeping your dental health in check contributes to your overall well-being.
Kelly Hancock, RDH
Kelly is a registered dental hygienist and oral health care provider. She is passionate about oral hygiene and encourages people to achieve optimal oral health. She has been working in the dental profession for 16 years and worked in many different roles in the dental industry. Kelly is currently a pediatric dental hygienist specializing in children’s dentistry. She is committed to helping others with their oral health care issues and helping others achieve a smile they love.