Oral Probiotics for Bad Breath- For Real?
Have We Finally Discovered a Solution for Bad Breath?
One of the most common interests for patients when they visit the dental office is treating their bad breath.
As a Dental Hygienist, I hear this concern expressed more frequently than any other.
Bad breath stinks!
Thankfully, using oral probiotics for bad breath can address the issue and this discovery is just what we have been looking for.
Oral probiotics are different from regular probiotics and they are essential for keeping the oral microbiome in balance.
These probiotics are a promising area of research as scientists are discovering that they are an all natural and effective way to fight bad breath, plaque, gum disease and several other undesirable oral health conditions.
Studies show how the friendly microorganisms of probiotics have health benefits far beyond the gut and are likely to improve overall dental health.
Why Does Bad Breath Stink?
Certain conditions like poor oral hygiene, medications, dry mouth and plaque accumulation make it a hospitable place for bacteria to thrive.
The bacteria give off a by product as they break down called volatile sulfur compounds (VSCs). The primary source of bad breath is from the volatile sulfur gases produced by bacterial overgrowth.
There needs to be a proper amount of good and bad bacteria. When bacteria are reduced with such products as antimicrobial rinses, the amount of bacteria can become deranged.
Oral probiotics for bad breath work differently than antimicrobial products. They work by repopulating the good bacteria and limiting the growth of the bad bacteria.
When the mouth is exposed to these probiotics, such as the probiotics in Hyperbiotics Pro Dental oral probiotics, it becomes colonized with bacteria unable to produce VSCs. This is just what we want to happen!
Not only do these probiotics crowd out the bad bacteria but also introduce proven strains of beneficial bacteria. They reduce the acidic pH levels and produce natural anti-bacterial agents.
When this happens, less volatile sulfur compounds are formed which improves bad breath.
No VSCs equals no bad breath!
What Makes Oral Probiotics Different from Other Probiotics?
Most people are familiar with probiotics for the gut.
They are trying to do the right thing by taking these supplements because they know they are beneficial for proper digestion. The most common forms are Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium.
These gut probiotics usually come in a capsule form so they can resist the acidic pH and gastric juices of the digestive system. Traditional probiotics contain bacterial strains that are native to the gut.
On the other hand, oral probiotics contain beneficial strains specific to the oral microbiome.
They come in the form of a chewable mint tablet that can be chewed or sucked on providing longer exposure where the beneficial bacteria can colonize in the mouth.
The main area in our mouth for bacteria to form is on the surface of the tongue and in and around the gum tissue.
The beneficial bacteria for our mouths is Streptococcus salivarius. Oral probiotics contain two strains of these bacteria called K12 and M18 and have been shown to significantly address an unhealthy mouth.
In fact, Streptococcus salivarius is often found to be deficient in people who suffer from bad breath.
M18 produces an enzyme that helps to loosen and dissolve the formation of plaque biofilm. In addition, the K12 strain produces a natural protein that prevents the growth of bad breath causing bacteria. Get one product with both of these strains in Hyperbiotics from Pro Dental.
Say Goodbye to Bad Breath!
When oral probiotics (good bacteria) are consumed on a regular basis, they basically compete with the harmful (bad bacteria) in the mouth.
When the oral microbiome is repopulated by using oral probiotics, the proper amounts of both good and bad bacteria exist. The byproducts of the bad bacteria, or VSCs (volatile sulfur compounds) are decreased.
The presence of Streptococcus salivarius K12 also acts to kill bacteria causing bad breath.
Probiotic lozenges promote the strain K12 and compete with the bacteria which lives mostly in and around your gums and on the surface of the tongue.
These areas are the favorite areas for the bacteria that produce VSCs to live. Streptocococcus salivarius K12 reduces bad breath by out competing the source of these smelly gases.
What Exactly is the Microbiome, Anyway?
The mouth is host to millions and millions of microbes (bacteria) that make up your oral microbiome.
It is considered to be the gateway to the rest of the body because it is the beginning of the digestive system.
If there isn’t enough of the good bacteria, the bad bacteria can pass to the rest of the body causing many other health problems.
The most studied of these concerns to date include cancer, Alzheimer’s disease and heart disease.
Oral Probiotics May Be the Answer for Dental Health
Several studies have been completed showing how they can help fight bad breath.
One study included 23 people who either took a placebo (fake supplement) or a Streptococcus salivarius probiotic supplement. Each of the participants used an antimicrobial mouthrinse prior to the study.
The study showed that major reductions in the amount of bacteria causing bad breath were found in 85 percent of the people using oral probiotics.
Most mouthrinses and products work to reduce bacteria in the mouth.
Unfortunately, they target all bacteria, including the beneficial ones. Not all bacteria are bad for you.
We actually need and depend on the millions and millions of them to maintain health.
By relying on antimicrobial products, we are in essence destroying too many of the good along with the bad.
In comparison, think about how antibiotics destroy bacteria in our gut. They destroy the bad but also destroy our necessary good ones.
Using oral probiotics for bad breath is shown to work in the same way to preserve and repopulate our good bacteria in our mouths just as probiotics do this for our gut.
More of a Good Thing
For people who want to reduce the amount of their cavities, Hyperbiotics Pro Dental oral probiotics may offer a valuable adjunct to their home care.
Studies show significantly reduced amounts of plaque accumulation for people who use them. Also, they produce anti-inflammatory properties which are beneficial for those who have gum disease.
There are many other areas of promising benefits other than reducing bad breath and cavities.
Among these are the reduction of tonsil stones, less ear infections, less tooth sensitivity, reduced yeast overgrowth and less dry mouth.
Oral probiotics are a welcome adjunct to good oral hygiene. They can easily be added into the daily routine of brushing twice a day and flossing once a day.
Our Mouths are Connected to Our Bodies!
We need to understand the health benefits of a balanced microbiome in our mouths.
The body is a system of very complex interactions that take place on a consistent basis designed to keep us healthy.
Eliminating bad breath is only one of the many benefits of oral probiotics.
Our mouth is not isolated from the rest of our body and by first and foremost keeping our mouths healthy we shall seek health in our entire bodies.