Oral Microbiome: What is it & Why is it Important?

The oral microbiome is a highly complex universe of hundreds of types of microorganisms, interacting with each other and with the life processes of the host who is providing the whole group with an environment that has everything they need to survive and prosper.

We never think about it, but our oral health depends on this diverse colony. Like the beneficial microorganisms in our gut that help us digest food, many of the organisms in the mouth microbiome are helpful. For example, some protect against invading bacteria – of which there is no shortage in our mouths. Our resident microorganisms may just be looking for something to eat, but they do us a favour all the same.

For All Your Questions About Dentures

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A Great Big Population

The oral microbiome is home to more than 700 different types of microorganisms, second only to the gut in number and diversity. There are bacteria, fungi, viruses, and protozoa – and their number is legion. Looking at the big, microscopic picture, there are almost as many microorganisms in our bodies as there are cells, and that is a very large number. Don’t let it put you off your next meal – they’ve been with us for a very, very long time. They evolved with us, and our relationship with them is complex and stable.

Don’t Forget to Brush

We do have to deal with some microorganisms that are not as helpful. Anyone can prove this to themselves by skipping the toothbrush for a few days (something we don’t recommend). We brush primarily to remove the deposits left by microorganisms that can harden into plaque – bad for teeth and especially for gums, and because a clean shiny set of teeth feels and looks nice. Every time we brush or use an antiseptic mouthwash, we’re killing off large populations of microorganisms both troublesome and helpful. But they don’t really seem to mind – their survival strategy is one of tiny size and enormous numbers.

Not All Exactly Alike

All people share a basic oral microbiome, but everyone has a slight difference, and some groups are vastly different – according to location, heritage, and a host of other environmental and biological factors. The exact makeup of the mouth microbiome has been difficult to study, because most of the tiny participants can’t be cultured in the lab. Advances in microbiology have produced more subtle and sophisticated methods of genetic and molecular analysis, and we’re learning a lot more all the time.

It Runs Fine by Itself

For such a complicated and still somewhat mysterious part of our bodies, the oral microbiome is rather notably canny. Like our breathing and heartbeat, the mouth microbiome is controlled and managed at a level we are normally not aware of, and it has its own life. Those are living creatures, very simple ones, but life forms in their own right, and separate from us. They’re along for the ride, and the snacks.

Choose Pearl Denture Studio for Innovation & Smiles

When it’s time for a beautiful new smile, Pearl Denture Studio is the denture clinic Northern Rivers looks to for the best product and the best care in denture services. Our staff is experienced and highly trained. We’re innovators and leaders in this field, and we want to work our magic for you. Call us on (02) 6684 3677, return our contact form, or book an appointment online. Do it today! It’s not just your teeth – it’s your life that will be transformed.

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