Oral Probiotics for Gum Disease: Does it Help?

Oral probiotics for gum disease, how does it help our mouth? Our mouths teem with bacteria that can cause dental cavities, more severe gum disease, and gingivitis. Even good oral hygiene habits, such as flossing and brushing twice daily. Might not be enough to prevent gum (periodontal) disease and tooth decay.

Researchers have discovered that approximately a third of adults in the US have untreated tooth decay, and nearly half of those suffer from periodontal disease.

Gum disease can be pretty dangerous than most people imagine. If left untreated, gum disease can cause loss of teeth and inflammation that quickens the degenerative aging process. Periodontal disease has also been associated with deadlier diseases, including Alzheimer’s, heart disease, and kidney and lung disorders.

If your gums start to bleed whenever you brush your teeth, it signifies that you might suffer from an immune imbalance. Oral probiotics may present a promising new front in the fight against gum disease and bleeding gums. Scientists searching for a solution to periodontal disease have discovered that the disease can be reduced through targeted oral probiotic lozenges. 

Does Oral Probiotics Help Prevent Gum Disease?

Yes, dental probiotics are capable of preventing periodontal disease from taking root. Gum disease is a severe gum infection that most likely damages the soft tissue and can destroy the bone that supports the teeth if not treated on time. Studies have also shown that periodontitis can cause the loosening of teeth or tooth loss.

While periodontitis is common, it is largely preventable. It is usually caused by poor dental hygiene. Prevention of gum disease can be achieved through brushing and flossing at least twice a day. Many probiotics have been through clinical studies showing clinical efficacy in preventing and treating gum disease. However, not all bacteria contain the same strain capable of solving gum disease problems.

The Oral Microbiome

The oral microbiome describes the natural community of microbes in the mouth. The fragile mucous membranes and the teeth’ surface are supported and safeguarded by healthy microbiomes.

Whenever the bacterial community is disturbed, and out of balance due to a lousy diet, an unhealthy lifestyle, medications, or illness, it causes a microbial imbalance (dysbiosis) that has a disastrous impact on the immune system’s usual response.

Dysbiosis causes various issues in the mouth, including cavities resulting from an overabundance of acid-producing bacteria. It also causes gum disease, which increases the risk of inflammatory diseases and tooth loss.

Scientists have discovered two strains of beneficial bacteria that can fight gum disease on two different fronts in response to the need to reestablish a healthy oral microbiome. The first bacterium, L. Plantarum L-137, strengthens oral immunity and encourages gum recovery. The second bacterium, S. salivarius M18, allows itself to thrive by eradicating dangerous bacteria in the mouth. 

According to the research, a heat-treated form of Lactobacillus Plantarum L-137 improves the ability of the immune system to fight. In a rat model of metabolic syndrome, oral treatment with L-137 has anti-inflammatory effects on cardiac and fat tissue. This resulted in reduced:

  • Levels of pro-inflammatory IL-6
  • Accumulation of fat under the skin
  • Heart dysfunction
  • Insulin resistance

Streptococcus salivarius M18 was shown to;

  • Promote a neutral mouth pH, which supports the oral microbiota
  • Colonize the human mouth to generate healthy bacteria that compete with dangerous mouth bacteria
  • Produce dextranase and urease, which are enzymes that break down plaque
  • Generate bacteriocins, which are bacteria-suppressing antibiotics that inhibit the growth of gum and tooth disease-producing microorganisms.

The two-pronged approach to preventing gum disease supports a healthy, balanced microbiome in the mouth. Microbiota actively fights oral infections while encouraging gum recovery. Taking these two bacteria can help prevent gum disease and enhance general oral and body health.

How do Oral Probiotics Work?

Oral microbiomes have a significant impact on oral health. Typically, gum disease and cavities are caused by specific bacterial species that colonize the tooth and gum’s surface and produce lactic acid by digesting carbohydrates and sugary materials. Several bacteria have been shown to induce gum disease by forming pathogenic plaque at the gum line. Eventually, the pathogenic plaque results in irreparable bone loss. 

Probiotics have been used for years in general medicine to treat inflammatory bowel disease, prevent respiratory tract infections and allergies, and manage vaginal infections. Numerous clinical studies on oral and dental probiotics have shown the effectiveness of oral bacterial species known as microbiomes. It helps lower halitosis, cavities, and signs and symptoms of gum disease.

Are there any Side Effects of Dental Probiotics?

Dental probiotics are generally safe. However, HIV/AIDS patients should refrain from taking probiotics because they are filled with microorganisms that might not favor their bodies. Probiotic supplements are also unfavorable to pregnant women, old folks, children, and lactating women. Taking high levels of probiotics is also unsafe for all users.

Consumers should take probiotics as prescribed by their dentists. It is also advisable to consult your doctor before using probiotics, especially if you’re under medication.

The first attempts to modify the oral microbiota with bacteria were made by Shivers and Hillman, who discovered that Streptococcus Sanguis could prevent Actinobacillus Actinomycetemcomitans from growing in gnotobiotic rats. 

In the following years, numerous animal investigations were carried out utilizing Bifidobacterium spp. and Lactobacillus spp. According to this research, administering these oral probiotic microorganisms reduced the prevalence of periodontal disease.

In Conclusion

Gum disease is one of the significant problems experienced by approximately 70% of adults worldwide. If not treated on time, gum disease can result in the loss of teeth and is also associated with an increased risk of severe disorders throughout the body.

One major cause of gum disease is the imbalance in the normal microbial community in the mouth and surrounding areas. Clinical studies have shown that periodontal disease is possible to treat and prevent. They suggest that treatment can be through probiotics.

It has been scientifically proven that oral probiotics can improve dental health outcomes. They have achieved this by reducing the effects of harmful bacteria and pathogens that result in periodontal disease.

The impact of probiotic supplements depends entirely on the oral microbiome’s existence. Users are, however, required to use the supplements for about four weeks for their benefits to start kicking in.

Deborah Jones
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