What is THIS? Would you like to see what critters live in your mouth today?
Well, at least you can visit my critters! This is my oral bacterial flora filmed earlier today before tooth cleaning. I promise you that after reading this blog you will never look at your teeth the same way and you will commit to loving them and protecting them better!
The small dots that are not moving too much in the video are beneficial bacteria in my mouth. The ones that are long and those that are moving are the pathogenic ones. Those that are zooming all around 90 miles an hour are definitely detrimental (below is a photo I took explaining details). This actually does not look too bad, but I was given a C. I need more beneficial bacteria and less of the detrimental ones.
Let’s talk about what I learned from our biological dentist providers, why it is important to you, and simple things you can do to prevent or stall some quite serious health challenges! This is something we can ALL improve upon.
I had my teeth cleaned today and this time I video recorded my bacteria before the cleaning for you. I do remember that last time we did the TV show of my very own bacteria (about a year ago – too busy with work to have come after 6 months on schedule), there was much more activity, including Spirochetes (see the photo) and the bacteria were much more crowded. I will be back in 6 months, I commit. I need to improve.
Functional medicine got stuck on the concept that everything starts in the gut. The truth is that it starts in our mouth already. We actually have research that shows that bacteria from the mouth can get straight into your brain, without having to get into the gut first.
Pathogenic bacteria in your mouth contribute to several serious medical conditions. That has already been well established in medical literature. One condition that is quite well known is heart disease. Bad teeth can lead straight to a heart attack. But we also learn about many more conditions, including autoimmune conditions like rheumatoid arthritis and even Alzheimer’s!
8 months ago I also did a DNA sample of my oral biofilm. It is called BiofilmDNA by OralVital, The Oral Infection Experts. I highly recommend it. Well, I quite forgot about it, so today I was educated on exactly what they found (remember, it was 8 months ago and today even before the cleaning, my bacteria were already better – a relief!). I did not like what I saw in the DNA result for sure. Interestingly, I do not have any of the health-challenged listed below and only three of these were in the red. But what if I was lazy about my oral hygiene and not do anything about that for another 20 years?
First the good news: I had no bacteria that cause tooth cavities. It is so correct. While most of my teeth have fillings, it has been decades since I had the last one added. All the damage was done between the age of 4 and 16!).
Then the bad news: I was in orange and red for some nasty bacteria. I want to share that with you because it makes all the difference what your commitment to oral health is. Let’s proceed with the pathogens they found in my mouth.
Here were the pathogenic bacteria found in my mouth. As you read on, think about your personal health challenges. How many of these have you experienced?
What Are the Detrimental Oral Bacteria Dancing in Your Mouth Today?
Treponema denticola (Td): a spirochete strongly associated with poly-microbial periodontal infections and chronic periodontal disease progression. It can contribute to host’s immunosuppression. Can produce gum disease, breath odor, and altered taste and smell. Interestingly, we nutritionists associate lack of smell with a very early warning of Parkinson’s disease while changes in taste (especially decrease in it) to zinc deficiency. Who would ever suspect oral bacteria of causing both? Td is one of the oral spirochetes that are found in 93.7% of brains of Alzheimer patients! Today we did not see them!!!
Tannerella forsythia (Tf): related to the destructive form of periodontitis = advanced recurrent periodontitis. It invades tissues and contributes to host immunosuppression. Similarly to Td above, it also causes odor and altered taste and smell. Tf is found in 80% of atherosclerotic plaques and contributes to thrombosis and cardiovascular disease.
Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans (Aa): this one is aggressive and is associated with juvenile periodontitis (I wonder if that is why my gums started to recede so early) and advanced/refractory adult periodontal disease. It can stimulate cytokines capable of causing bone destruction. It is implicated in heart attacks, strokes, aspiration pneumonia and rheumatoid arthritis.
Fusobacterium nucleate (Fn): also causes odor and altered taste and smell, is prevalent in those with periodontal disease, and is associated with premature infant death (!!!), low birth weight, miscarriages. This should alone motivate any future moms and those currently pregnant to look at the solutions below. Fn is also found in colorectal and pancreatic cancers and atherosclerotic plaques. Yes, your oral bacteria will travel- all the way to the rectum! Finally, Fn contributes to thrombosis and cardiovascular disease.
Peptostreptococcus micros (Pm): here is a form of strep…associated with progressive periodontal disease, abscessed teeth, endodontic abscesses, and peritonsillar infections. A reminder that inflamed tonsils are often invaded by strep or Epstein-Barr Virus or both. Pm is involved in severe ear infections, sinus infections, abdominal abscesses, prosthetic joint infections, and gynecological infections. Will travel to all these areas from your mouth, just think about that. So many of my own clients have chronic or recurring acute sinus infections and gynecological infections.
Candida albicans (Ca): I am glad that was in yellow and not in red. I did not know that Ca is present in most mouths and may have no clinical signs. It does contribute to poly-microbial biofilms on the teeth, soft tissues, and acrylic surfaces. It causes inflammation of tissues associated with dentures, night guards and other oral appliances can lead to aggressive periodontitis. It creates open wounds, which allows gum disease bacteria to invade the tissue. Along with S. mutant, it causes early childhood delay and geriatric root decay.
Simple Solutions for Your Oral Health
Keep in mind that in the video, I did not have crowds of the bad bacteria anymore and my report was old and I am healthy. So for me, this is the ideal time to step up my game. If you are already struggling with any oral issues, chances are that your bad bacteria are much more robust and dangerous. Now that you have a new appreciation for your mouth, here are simple steps to incorporate into your daily routine:
- Find a doctor who can order a BiofilmDNA for you and also show you your very own mouth TV live.
- Consider brushing teeth not twice a day but after each of the three main meals if you have a lot of oral challenges.
- When brushing your teeth, also scrape your tongue. I tongue-brush twice a day along with tooth brushing. Apparently, we accumulate a lot of our bad bacteria on the tongue.
- Buy Waterpik – use warm water and add a few drops of Biocidin to it or ask your dentist to recommend an herbal tincture. Use twice a day. According to my dentists, NOTHING will get into the crevices along the gums and between teeth – not even the best brushing – water picking will. Note: please do not put essential oils into the water, e.g. tea tree oil or clove oil – they may react with the plastic. yes, I wish water picks were not plastic, but we pick our battles.
- You can also use Biocidin in a spray version (same link as Biocidin above)
- Buy little dental picks. They look like miniature toothbrushes and you only use them to push them between your teeth (with a little toothpaste on them). I am holding my dentist’s favorite sample and in the background, you see similar ones I bought at Target. I had a client whose very compromised mouth did not improve with anything but this.
7. Go to an Indian store and pick up a bag of Indian fennel seeds. They should look exactly like cumin seeds except green and not brown. Toast them dry in a skillet until fragrant. Then keep them in your purse or a backpack (I used to carry them in a small container). If you are traveling all day and do not have access to toothpaste but need to refresh, chew on a handful. It is not only a healthy but a tasty chewing experience and the effect is refreshing, with clean teeth and fresh breath.
8. Olive leaf extract in liquid or oil of oregano dropper (the latter is in olive oil – by Genestra) are both strongly antibacterial and can be swooshed before swallowing. Add 3 drops of oil of oregano to a glass of warm water first. Gargle either as well to reach the back of the throat and your tonsils.
Both are available on Fullscript.
9. Aloe vera juice is also antimicrobial and can be gargled and swooshed around before swallowing. I have worked with aloe vera juice therapeutically in my practice since 2009 and consider it one of the best ket secrets. Here is a fabulous article I wrote on it. The therapeutically most effective aloe I have have found is “Ultimate Aloe Vera Juice” you can find here. and if you live outside of the US, you will find it but most likely only in the powder form: Simply type in “Ultimate Aloe Vera Juice” here.
10. Get probiotics for oral cavity. Nutrametrix brand at www.kineswellnesssolutions.com has children’s chewable probiotics for just that.
11. Get a special toothpaste with the added Biocidin, called Dentalcidin, available on Fullscript. Here is the official information. If it is too expensive to use, mix it with your other toothpaste or use it once a day – be creative. Or perhaps you can add a drop of the Biocidin dropper into your toothpaste! Here is the official description of Biocidin toothpaste called Dentalcidin:
12. Floss! The bacteria love the sauces between your teeth. I carry little floss picks in my purse at all times. They come very handy especially after a meal out. Remember though that it is the water pick that will help eradicate most of the bad bacteria around your teeth and gums.
13. Get your teeth cleaned twice a year. Seeing what I have, now I will find the time to do so too.
14. How about oil pulling? It is worth looking into if you are willing to invest at least 45 days of the routine. Here are resources you will find most helpful:
Click here for a PDF with the ” how to” and the existing research I wrote on the topic a few years ago.
Click here for more on oil pulling in the context of Ayurveda and for my video interview on the topic I did for ABC2 a few years back.
I hope now you have a lot more tools and a renewed motivation to help protect your gums, teeth, and so much more.
To your …oral…health!
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