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  • Writer's pictureDr. Josephine Perez

There’s a Jungle in Your Mouth…

Today most of us understand our mouths are the gateway to the rest of the body. There’s a whole microcosm of bacteria—both beneficial and, in some cases, not so beneficial—that travel to every nook and cranny. Our nutrition highly impacts what “grows” and flourishes in our bodies. Here’s something most do not know: how you sleep impacts what grows in your mouth! There are billions of bacteria thriving in the oral cavity and, for that matter, in our gut. And what you “feed” them matters. Feed the good bacteria or feed the bad! In the past, the goal of traditional dentistry was to “kill” the bad bacteria. Biological Dentistry has moved away from just “killing” towards managing the oral microbiome ecosystem to promote oral systemic health.

We all have bacteria growing with us. In the oral cavity, our saliva is beneficial in many ways. Saliva protects us from cavities, starts digestion, and buffers the pH of the biofilm. It has biomarkers and hormone levels that today help medical and dental professionals identify disease and metabolic disorders. There’s only one problem: many of us are sleeping with our mouths open! Humans were not meant to sleep with their mouths open, heck most earthlings either. When we sleep with our mouths open, the pH is reduced; in other words, our mouths turn more acidic, creating the perfect storm for cavities, gum inflammation and overgrowth of anaerobic bacteria. This creates disbyosis which can lead to metabolic syndrome/imbalances, high blood pressure and, in turn, an overgrowth of bad bacteria.

The new research has found that some of these “bad bacteria” are related to Alzheimer’s (P. Gingivitis, Borrelia, T. Denticola, Stachybotrys) and Breast Cancers (Fusobacterium nucleatum). F. Nucleatum inhibits the immune system and promotes the growth of malignant breast tumors in women. Tumors have unique environments that can support the growth of various bacteria. They have numerous blood vessels with abundant blood flow, which can allow bacteria from the blood stream to easily enter a tumor and live there. Oral bacterial, called F. Nucleatum, can travel through the blood from the mouth and stay in a breast tumor. F. Nucleatum enters the blood stream from infected areas of the mouth such as swollen and bleeding gums, infected root canals, dental root residues and even dental cavities. It's important to note that those who have already received cancer treatments such as chemotherapy may have a compromised immune system for a long time. This can create an environment that is favorable to survival of pathogenic bacteria in the blood and their installation in breast tumors. F. Nucleatum has been shown to cause resistance to cancer treatments and modify the immune system.

Biological Dentists test saliva! There are several tests that can qualitatively evaluate each person’s saliva for bacteria present. We also have electron microscopes that can show us—real-time—what is living in our mouths. Actinomyces, fusiloform and even amoebas!

Oral hygiene should be a priority, not only for breast cancer patients, but for those concerned with autoimmune disease, dementia risks, Alzheimer’s, and many other conditions. Frequent toothbrushing and flossing should be a mandatory rule. The eradication of contamination and infection in the mouth (including dental cavities, abscesses, swollen and bleeding gums, old contaminated prostheses, and metal implants causing inflammation) must be diligently attended to. These areas can harbor, not only Fusiloform bacteria and Porphyromonas gingivalis, but at least five other species. We can now test for them with a simple saliva test: HR5!

These high-risk pathogens are the causative DRIVERS of INFLAMMATION and DISEASE:

High-Risk Pathogen

Associated Conditions

Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans (Aa)

Heart disease, Ischemic stroke, Alzheimer’s, Dementia, Brain abcesses, Aneurysm, Altered immune response, Arterial plaque, Oxidative stress, Pregnancy complications, Bone loss, Increase in dental decay, Periodontal disease, Implant failures

Porphyromonas gingivitis (Pg)

Heart attack, Ischemic stroke, Arterial plaque, Pregnancy complications, Cancer, diabetes, Rheumatoid arthritis, Obesity, Oxidative stress, Appendicitis, Multiple sclerosis, Periodontal disease, Implant failure

Treponema denticola (Td)

Cardiovascular disease, Arterial plaque, Alzheimer’s, Joint replacement failures, Cancer, Stroke, Dementia, Periodontal disease

Tannerella forsythia (Tf)

Alzheimer’s, Dementia, Arterial plaque, Heart disease, Pregnancy complications, Diabetes, Joint replacements, Cancer, Aneurysm, Oxidative stress, Stroke, Implant failure, Periodontal disease

Fusobacterium nucleatum (Fn)

Pregnancy complications, Cancer, Arterial plaque, Alzheimer’s, Dementia, Altered immune response, Intestinal complications, Heart disease, Arthritis, Implant failure, Periodontal disease

The good news is we have ways to mitigate and even eliminate unwanted bacteria. Traditional dentistry used Chlorhexidine mouth rinses, but new research has found that these rinses (including Peridex and Periogard) inhibit fibrin formation, which is the cornerstone in the healing process. We have lasers that decontaminate, ozone treatments, and a whole army of biological treatments that can naturally help eliminate these bad guys and allow for healing. The first step in prevention is screening! Ask your Biological Dentist for the HR5 test, to see if you are at risk.

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