As your Tigard family dental care provider, our team of Tigard Family Dental want to highlight important oral health information that can help protect the long-term health of your teeth and gums. While most patient probably knows the importance of brushing and flossing daily, diet and the supplements we take also play a pivotal role in determining the state of our oral health.
In recent years, studies have shown that taking probiotics may help to reduce gingivitis in patients.
Gingivitis, or periodontal disease when allowed to progress, is a mild form of gum disease that causes inflammation, irritation, and redness of gum tissue. Preventing gingivitis significantly helps to lower your risk of tooth decay, cavities, and permanent tooth loss.
Based on research, changing your diet to include more probiotics, a type of healthy bacteria found in the body, may help to slow or even stop the oral bacteria responsible for the development of gingivitis, according to The National Center for Biotechnology Information.
The Battle of Good Vs. Bad Bacteria
In one study, participants who took two types of the probiotic Lactobacillus reuteri had their markers for gingivitis decreased significantly. The oral buildup of plaque also decreased in the study participants who took the probiotics. Of the two mixtures, only one had the same level of impact when it came to the eradication of the oral bacteria responsible for gingivitis. The mixture most successful at fighting gum disease showed that the Lactobacillus reuteri had colonized 65 percent of patients while the other mixture that was less successful at fighting gingivitis had a colonization percentage of 95.
Researchers developed several theories behind why the probiotics had the effect on gingivitis demonstrated in the study. The researchers suggested the probiotic secretions prevent the growth of a variety of pathogens, can easily colonize the mouth and drive out harmful oral bacteria, or stop the spread of pro-inflammatory substances, reported the Canadian Dental Association.
A separate study examined the effects of Bifidobacterium animalis and Lactobacillus rhamnosus on the prevention of gingivitis. Study participants who took probiotics showed a drop in the prevalence of gum disease, according to NYR Natural News. The probiotic study group also showed lower levels of plaque.
Oral probiotics are designed to repopulate the oral biome with good bacteria and other microorganisms. Once in the biome, the probiotics are capable of taking over the harmful germs trying to grow in the mouth, pushing them out and making the biome healthier overall.
While more research is required to fully understand how probiotics may help treat existing and prevent future gingivitis, the early findings behind these studies provide encouragement of what the future may hold.
Tips From Your Tigard Family Dental Care Provider
In addition to adding more probiotics to your diet, limiting daily sugar intake can also have an enormous impact on your oral health. Plaque, a harmful oral bacteria that contributes to tooth decay and dental disease, thrives on the sugars we consume to produce harmful secretions that slowly erode away tooth enamel.
Given time, plaque can wear small grooves and holes into the surface of your teeth that allow bacteria to enter the tooth and attack the delicate interior known as the dentin. Once infected, the interior of a tooth may need to be removed through a root canal to restore the tooth back to health.
By brushing and flossing daily, you can eliminate plaque from your mouth so your teeth remain healthy and resilient to oral bacteria attacks. By adding more probiotics to your diet, you can eliminate even more of the potentially harmful oral bacteria that represent a threat to your long-term oral health.