If it was possible to take a look at the organism living in your mouth you would be very amazed. The mouth is not a sterile place and is full of bacteria, viruses, protozoa and fungi. These organisms are not harmful as such as long as there numbers remain in just the right quantity. These organisms are found in all corners of the mouth including the tongue and the teeth.
They are helpful to the function of the body and their duties include:
- Keeping at bay harmful bacteria that are not good for your health.
- They feed off each other therefore managing the population in the mouth.
- They feed on the food that gets stuck in the teeth, helping to keep the mouth clean.
One strain of bacteria that occurs naturally in the mouth but is responsible for cavities is the Streptococcus mutants. It is believed that it may have started out like good bacteria but due to changes in diets and introduction of refined sugars, it mutated such as to produce excessive acidic compounds from sugars. The large quantity of acids produced may have overwhelmed the body’s natural defence to neutralize the acids effectively.
The body was designed such as to manage these organisms that have taken residence in the mouth. As long as the environment is left at optimal conditions, these organisms will continue to work in the body as they were meant to offering protection from harmful pathogens. The undesired pathogens such as the cavity causing bacteria however should not be allowed to thrive in the mouth.
Observing ideal hygienic practices will ensure that your mouth is healthy. Managing your intake of refined sugar is the first thing that you can do. When you eat healthy and avoid sugary food and drinks, you will starve the bacteria of their primary source of food. Also you will make your teeth and gums stronger to resist the effect of the acids. Regular brushing of your teeth and flossing will also remove any food debris that can be used to manufacture the acidic compounds that are harmful for your oral health.
Regular visits to the dentist will ensure that you get professional cleaning once in a while. You will also get advice on the best care to take to ensure that the organisms in your mouth do not cause harm to your oral health.