Every system of our body has its own microbiome. This includes the mouth. Maintaining a healthy balance of the friendly bacteria housed in our mouths improves overall health, including cardiovascular health.
New research reveals that a balanced oral microbiome helps maintain good cardiovascular health via the conversion of nitrates into nitric oxide (NO), a signaling molecule that helps maintain normal blood pressure. This study also shows that chlorhexidine, an antiseptic substance in mouthwash, may kill NO-producing bacteria, which in turn, may raise systolic blood pressure.
To further complicate this, other research seemed to show that Sars-Cov-2 viruses can be inactivated using certain commercially available mouthwashes. These are preliminary studies and the mouthwashes don’t treat or protect against catching the virus.
Personally, I only use flouride and antibiotic-free mouth rinses made either with natural ingredients or I simply oil pull and rinse with green tea. Drinking green tea is known to help reduce blood pressure and may boost the antibacterial capacity of saliva. Rinsing with it was found to be more effective in reducing gingivitis than chlorhexidine. Without increasing blood pressure.
One other simple thing you can do to improve your oral microbiome is to scrape your tongue first thing each morning, and then rinse your mouth. When your tongue isn’t cleaned regularly, it creates a low-oxygen environment where bacteria like Klebsiella can thrive. The majority of the microbes in our mouths live on our tongue.
Do you regularly use mouthwash? Does this information change your thoughts on that? Do you practice any of the other things mentioned?
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