Your mouth is essentially your “upper gut” and your intestines are your “lower gut”. Digestion actually begins in your mouth as you chew food and salivary enzymes convert certain starches and other carbohydrates into simple sugars.
Most folks know that antibiotics can mess up the balance of good and bad germs in your lower gut. And obviously, you have germs in your mouth, good and bad, just like in your lower gut. And the balance of these mouth germs can be upset too.
You probably don’t take antibiotics twice a day for most of your life. But you probably use broad-spectrum, germ-killing dental products nearly every day for most of your life. And I guarantee that eating and drinking toothpastes and mouthwashes would definitely do a number on your lower gut!
So, how’s come everyone is so concerned about (lower) gut problems and taking probiotics, but few, if any connect the dots to the upper gut (mouth)? Why, in medicine, does the mouth always seem separate from the body?
Yet, everyone is told to remove dental plaque every day and use products with claims such as “Kills 99% of Germs”.
What if your physician told you that you must kill 99% of your intestinal microbes twice a day? That would sound totally crazy, right?
But why does killing 99% of your gut germs sound crazy, yet killing 99% of your mouth germs sounds normal?
It's inconsistent. It's wrong. We really shouldn't try to kill 99% of our mouth germs every day.
What we should do is manage our mouth microbes and try to foster the growth of good oral microbes and stop feeding the bad oral microbes. We need to let the microbes battle it out. And we need to be very effective at physically removing dental plaque, without resorting to harsh chemicals, antiseptics, and antibiotics -- except in rare cases that are beyond the scope of this article.
The truth is, it's possible to mess up the microbes in your mouth like you can do to your lower gut. Except that you don't get mouth diarrhea, mouth bloating, leaky mouth syndrome, irritable mouth, and flatulence — or do you?
Could it be that dental decay, bleeding gums, and bad breath are the oral analogues of intestinal problems? In fact, a few oral microbes do cause gum epithelial ulcerations much like in the gut epithelium of people with irritable bowel syndrome, colitis, and leaky gut. And you know how horrible-smelling breath can sometimes become. Certain gum disease germs produce foul-smelling chemicals that reek of rotten eggs, poop, and death.
Therefore, if intestinal probiotics can help with lower gut microbial problems, then dental probiotics should be able to help with upper gut microbial problems. And they do. Numerous studies done over the last few years show that dental probiotics can help achieve better oral health.
As a dentist, I cannot ethically tell you to stop using germ-killing dental products. And, sometimes, in special cases they are necessary.
However, if you’re still trying to kill 99% of oral microbes every day or so, why not at least add a known quantity of some known “good microbes” so you can recolonize your mouth with good germs. This way, the good germs can help you fight the bad ones while lessening the use of potentially toxic dental products.
That’s why I made Breathific™ Dental Probiotic Strips
— to help balance your oral microbes -- especially if you don't eat enough fermented foods such as yogurt, kefir, kimchi, pickles, or sauerkraut.
With its patent pending, Place and Forget™, time-release technology, you can sort-of “wear” a Breathific™ probiotic strip much like you wear a teeth bleaching strip. In fact, you can even safely sleep with it and not worry about choking because the strip dissolves into a spreadable film much like ordinary dental plaque — except it’s good plaque. And it lasts from three to six hours. No other dental probiotic does this!
For more information about Breathific, click here.