We know that probiotics are great for our gut health — but now scientists say so-called “good bacteria” may also help us prevent cavities.
Scientists in Florida say they are on the brink of developing a probiotic pill that’ll fight cavities by regulating the pH in your mouth.
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Probiotics May Be a Plaque Killer
The researchers say the pill attacks the bacteria on teeth that form plaque and break down teeth. In doing so, the pill keeps the acidity in the mouth at neutral levels, which decreases the risk for cavities and other conditions to develop.
“Like a probiotic approach to the gut to promote health, what if a probiotic formulation could be developed from natural beneficial bacteria from humans who had a very high capacity to break down arginine?” said Dr. Robert Burne, an associate dean at the University of Florida’s College of Dentistry.
Dental health professionals say probiotics may also be used as a risk assessment tool. If researchers can confirm that people who have more of this healthy type of bacteria in the mouth are at lower risk of cavities, compared to those who don’t carry the beneficial bacteria — this could be one of the factors dentists measure to determine the risk for cavities.
Details of the research and probiotic pill are published in the journal Applied and Environmental Microbiology.
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