Are Dental Probiotics Good for You?
Yes, dental probiotics promote good oral health by helping to boost the levels of beneficial bacteria that exist in your mouth. They can create biofilms to replace those created by unhealthy or undesirable bacteria. Then, they can act as a shield against bad bacteria.
Find out more about dental probiotics by reading our dentist‘s article below.
Benefits of Dental Probiotics
There are several benefits that come along with oral probiotics, including:
Preventing the Formation of Plaque
A type of bacteria known as A12 has been found to prevent the growth of Streptococcus mutans, a bacteria known to lead to plaque. A12 also promotes a stable, healthy biofilm and moderated plaque PH, while preventing cavities.
Fighting Germs That Cause Bad Breath
The primary cause of bad breath is unhealthy bacteria inside of our mouths, throats, and upper digestive systems, which cause foul-smelling compounds as a byproduct of our metabolism. Taking an oral probiotic has been shown to prevent the formation of that harmful bacteria.
Preventing Oral Cancer
There isn’t a ton of human trial data yet, but when it comes to rats, researchers have found a potential of oral probiotics, specifically the bacteria Lactobacillus salivarius, reduces the instances of oral cancer.
Gingivitis is the first stage of gum disease, and it causes inflammation of the gums as a result of unhealthy bacteria in tartar and plaque. Studies have shown that individuals with gingivitis who consumed oral probiotics had less plaque and other signs of gingivitis after two weeks.
Dental probiotics have also been shown to prevent or address other oral diseases like thrush (Candidiasis), Tonsilitis, and respiratory infections.
Oral vs. Gut Probiotics
Simply put, they are designed to do different things—but that doesn’t mean that they can’t be mutually beneficial to your oral or digestive health (especially when it comes to the overlap with regular probiotics).
Gut probiotics contain bacteria strains that are native to that part of your body, and they are often delivered in capsules made to resist the powerful gastric juices and acidic PH of your digestive system.
Oral probiotics, on the other hand, contain strains that are specific to your mouth. And they are usually in the form of lozenges, liquids, or chewable tablets.
But again, as the mouth is connected to the rest of your body, gut probiotics can still be beneficial for your oral health. For instance, good gut bacteria established in birth and infancy has been shown to potentially reduce a child’s risk of cavities.
Dietary Sources of Dental Probiotics
If you’re looking to increase the health of your teeth and mouth overall through the consumption of probiotics, you can look for these products at the store:
This is regular dairy milk fortified with an assortment of probiotics.
Greek yogurt contains live and active cultures.
Kefir is fermented milk that is made from kefir grains, a specific type of culture.
This is cabbage that is fermented with lactic acid bacteria.
Best Probiotic Strains
Some of the most beneficial probiotic strains to oral health include:
- Lactobacillus reuteri
- Lactobacillus salivarius
- Streptococcus salivarius K12
- Streptococcus salivarius M18
- Lactobacillus paracasei
- Lactobacillus sakei
However, there are different strains that address certain dental issues (like cavities, gingivitis, etc.).
Let Our Dentist Know If You Have More Questions About Dental Probiotics
Dental probiotics are helpful to your oral health and offer many benefits. If you have any additional questions about dental probiotics, let our dentist know during your next office visit. To schedule your next dental exam, request an appointment online.
Creating Smiles, PC, located in St. John and Valparaiso, Indiana, offers everything you need for a healthy smile and a healthier life. Dr. Kapers and his team can take the anxiety and uncertainty out of dental visits with sedation dentistry, and we're the premier provider of dental implants in the region.