The oral microbiome. Ever heard of it? It’s the world of bacteria (home to nearly 800 unique microorganisms) that reside in and around your mouth, ears, nose, throat, and even in your nasal passages. But most importantly, it’s the keeper of the gate and first line of defense for your health.
When there aren’t enough healthy bacteria in your oral cavity to keep things in check, unwanted invaders can begin to thrive within your system and possibly lead to problems with your oral and respiratory health and even your immune function.
So, what causes our oral flora to become unbalanced? Well, a little bit of everything. From dietary choices to antibiotics, smoking, and other stimulants, the good bacteria in our mouths have a hard time standing up to foreign substances such as nicotine, aspartame, and other sugars and additives.
What’s worse, many of the oral hygiene products on the market can actually contribute to the problem! Killing the bad bacteria with common antibacterial dental products can wipe out the good bacteria too. That’s why it can feel like the more we try to remedy the problem, the worse it gets.
Thankfully, this knowledge is spreading, and there are more natural oral health products on the market than ever before. Here are our top favorites and how they can help naturally support the health of your oral microbiome.
“The Source” Toothbrush by Radius
Did you know that a poorly designed toothbrush can lead to “overbrushing,” placing too much pressure on the teeth and gums, wearing away at enamel and causing more harm than good?
The folks at Radius created The Source, an earth-friendly, easy-to-handle toothbrush with an unconventional but sleek and effective design - we just love it! The soft bristles clean and massage the gums rather than aggravating them, while the extra-wide head reduces the chances of overbrushing by spreading out pressure over a larger area.
But perhaps one of our favorite things about this women-owned and family-run company is their passion for creating sustainable, eco-friendly products. The Source is BPA-free, and its unique handle is composed of recycled and repurposed materials like wood, paper, and even recycled dollar bills - all of which lead to a beautiful, natural-looking product that’s perfect for maximizing oral health.
Have you ever stopped to consider what’s in a typical tube of toothpaste? Just a quick glance at the list of ingredients may be enough to surprise you. Most toothpastes on the market contain glycerin, fluoride, foaming agents, antibacterial agents, and artificial colors and flavors - just to name a few. Because these and other elements can deplete resident oral flora, a natural toothpaste is important to work into your daily regimen.
The founders at Earthpaste searched high and low for a natural alternative but came up empty. That’s when they decided to create Earthpaste - an all-natural toothpaste containing only five ingredients, and they all come from the earth!
Together, 5 simple elements (purified water, redmond clay, natural xylitol, sea salt, and essential oils) form to create a great-tasting, creamy paste that works to polish, cleanse, and maintain balanced pH levels for healthy teeth and gums. It’s everything your mouth needs to feel clean and nothing artificial.
Flossing has somehow become the most dreaded of all dental practices. In fact, did you know that only 4 in 10 adults floss on a regular basis?
Even though most adults admit they would rather do the dishes than floss, removing tiny bits of food and debris on a regular basis is critical in maintaining oral health and hygiene. In fact, this simple daily task helps to prevent stains, bad breath, and gunky build-up -- leading to a healthier smile and fresher breath.
That’s why we love CocoFloss, a great-tasting, soft textured floss coated with coconut oil, nature’s best kept anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial secret. CocoFloss glides smoothly between your teeth, leaving behind traces of beneficial coconut oil to dissolve between the teeth and nurture a healthy oral microbiome.
Uncle Harry’s Remineralization Kit
By now you know how critical oral health is, but did you know that a poor oral environment can contribute to the loss of precious tooth enamel? Enamel is the hardest and most highly mineralized substance in your body. It plays a key role in protecting the health of your teeth. It forms a strong barrier that guards the inner layers of your teeth against harsh acids, and it’s also what allows you to enjoy an icy cold popsicle or a hot cup of coffee without cringing.
Unfortunately, once enamel is destroyed, (through factors like dry mouth, an overly acidic environment or diet, and even brushing too hard) your body does not make more to replace it. That’s why it’s so important to do everything that you can to maintain tooth enamel at all costs.
Uncle Harry’s Natural Products is a family-run company, dedicated to creating “earth-friendly products at people-friendly prices.” These guys know just how critical the health of tooth enamel is which is why they’ve joined three of their most popular oral health products together to create their incredible Remineralization Kit.
This kit contains three of their signature products: All Natural Tooth Powder, Miracle Mouthwash, and Liquid Remineralization for Tooth Enamel, all of which work together to neutralize acids and promote a strong, healthy smile. And best of all, Uncle Harry’s products are hand-made using only the finest quality botanicals, including local, organic, and sustainable raw materials. They’re also gluten-free and vegan!
We already know that an imbalance of oral flora can lead to a myriad of problems, but did you know that the most effective step you can take towards rebalancing your oral microbiome is to replenish it with targeted beneficial bacteria?
Even if you brush and floss your teeth religiously, newly cleaned surfaces are continually doused in saliva - the transport medium that carries bacteria and other microorganisms from places you can’t clean with traditional products like tiny crevices in your gums, the back of your tongue, and your throat and tonsils.
Enter PRO-Dental - a natural, revolutionary oral probiotic supplement that packs a healthy punch with an incredible blend of probiotic strains known for their oral health benefits. Similar to digestive probiotics, oral probiotics work by introducing beneficial bacteria within your mouth, nose, throat, ears, and sinuses. This good bacteria then promotes oral health by competitively excluding the bad guys and producing specialized antimicrobial substances that consistently work to protect and support oral health.1
At Hyperbiotics, we’re devoted to creating the most effective and highest quality probiotic formulas. In creating PRO-Dental, we have selected what we feel to be the most proven strains for oral health (including S. salivarius K12, S. salivarius M18, L. reuteri and L. paracasei) to populate your oral cavity with beneficial flora.
This powerful probiotic combination helps you maintain a strong defense against the endless threats that our mouths and upper respiratory systems encounter day to day. Using just a hint of natural mint extract, PRO-Dental includes zero sugar or questionable additives. The best news? This chewable supplement tastes great and is both safe and beneficial for the whole family!
DAYSPA Body Basics Buck Naked Lip Butter
When considering your oral health, it can be easy to overlook your lips. But if your mouth is considered the gatekeeper to your body, your lips are the bodyguards!
What you may not realize is that the state of your lips is a reflection of the health and hydration of your entire body. But unfortunately, dry and cracked lips can be an indicator of lowered immune function, and can also be the path by which unwanted invaders make their way in, possibly leading to more sick days.
The very best thing you can do to achieve soft and kissable lips is to ensure your body is well-nourished and hydrated. Address the root of the problem by consuming lots of fruits and veggies and washing them down with plenty of water.
You can also help your lips retain their precious moisture with a natural lip balm! Our pick? The soothing Buck Naked Lip Balm by DAYSPA Body Basics.
Devoted to supporting a natural and health-conscious lifestyle, DAYSPA Body Basics provides a holistic approach to skin care. Their Buck Naked Lip Balm is 100% natural, paraben-free and packed with cocoa butter and organic coconut oil. This pure and soothing combination keeps lips hydrated so they can best protect you.
Honey Mama’s Chocolate
While we’re showing love for our oral microbiomes, we can’t forget about our taste buds! We won’t tell you that chocolate is good for your teeth, per se, but it’s important to know that you can indulge while also making smart choices for your oral health by aiming for goodies free of refined sugar and unnatural additives. And, what’s more, research shows that your beneficial gut bacteria can ferment dark chocolate into compounds that benefit your heart.2
Plus, we’re pretty sure it’s scientifically proven to be good for your soul.
If you remember from our holiday gift guide, we’re raving fans of the Portland-based raw chocolatiers at Honey Mama’s. Honey Mama’s is a small company that has perfected the most delectable treats with their raw, nutrient rich cacao-honey desserts. All of these delicious goodies are made with a combination of fresh cacao powder and locally-sourced ingredients that are certified Fair Trade and non-GMO. Created from just five pure ingredients, these chocolates are also soy, dairy, egg, gluten, and grain free. Our favorites? Lavender and mint!
1. Pierro, F. D., Zanvit, A., Nobili, P., Risso, P., & Fornaini, C. (2015). Cariogram outcome after 90 days of oral treatment with Streptococcus salivarius M18 in children at high risk for dental caries: Results of a randomized, controlled study. Clinical, Cosmetic and Investigational Dentistry, 107-113.
2. Finley, J. (2014, March). Impact of the Microbiome on Cocoa Polyphenolic Compounds. Findings presented at the 247th National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society, Dallas, TX.
Julie Hays is the Communications Director here at Hyperbiotics. Health writer and mama of two little girls, Julie's on a mission to empower others to live lives free of the microbial depletion many of us face today. For more ideas on how you can maximize wellness and benefit from the power of probiotics, be sure to subscribe to our newsletter.
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