How to Kill Bacteria in Your Mouth

how to kill bacteria in mouth

Most oral health issues are caused by a buildup of harmful bacteria. Killing bacteria before it can build up and cause problems is the best defense when it comes to a healthy mouth. At Lifetime Family Dental, we are here to treat, educate, and help you in the fight against bacteria. Read on for a list of the most effective ways to kill bacteria in your mouth. 

The Effects of Harmful Bacteria in the Mouth

The issues bacteria causes may begin in your mouth, but they can also spread to the rest of your body, wreaking havoc on your overall health. Here are just a few of the effects of harmful bacteria in your mouth:

  • Cavities. Bacteria weakens your tooth enamel, which leads to tooth decay, or holes in your teeth. 
  • Periodontal disease (gum disease). Bacteria causes a buildup of plaque and tartar, which leads to painful inflammation of the gums and eventually tooth loss, if left untreated. 
  • Halitosis. Bacteria is the main cause of bad breath, which can be uncomfortable and embarrassing.
  • Heart disease. Believe it or not, patients who do not practice sufficient oral hygiene are more likely to develop cardiovascular problems. This is thought to be because bacteria from the mouth can travel to the heart through the bloodstream. 
  • Strokes. This study has linked patients who have suffered strokes with excess bacteria in the mouth.

Habits that Feed Bacteria

There are certain bad habits that allow bacteria to flourish in the mouth, including: 

  • Smoking or chewing tobacco. Tobacco is among the worst substances you can put in your body, and that includes your mouth. Tobacco, in any of its forms, eats away at your enamel and gums, weakening the protective elements of your mouth. It should be avoided at all costs.
  • Consuming a lot of sugar. Sugar is another extremely detrimental substance, and should only be consumed in moderation. But, unfortunately, it’s a regular part of the American diet. This doesn’t mean you should never enjoy a sweet, however, cutting back significantly will prevent it from wreaking havoc on your mouth.
  • Forgetting to brush. A recent study showed that 3 out of 4 millennials only brush once a day. That’s simply not enough to combat the rapid buildup of bacteria in our mouths.
  • Forgoing flossing. When you skip flossing, you fail to remove food debris and bacteria from between your teeth, which can cause decay and other issues. 

Habits that Fight Bacteria

Now we know that bacteria can be encouraged to grow in a variety of ways. Thankfully, there are also a variety of ways to fight the growth of bacteria. Here are a few suggestions for how to kill bacteria in the mouth:  

  • Brushing and flossing. We cannot tell you enough that brushing at least twice a day and flossing daily can make a big difference.
  • Eating less sugar. Sugar is not only bacteria’s best friend, but it’s also addictive. You’re likely to be addicted to sugar without even realizing it. It’s worth it to take steps to eat less sugar to improve oral and overall health. 
  • Quit smoking. There’s no time like the present to kick this devastating habit. 
  • Frequent cleanings. Never skip your biannual appointment. There is no replacement for a professional cleaning no matter how well you brush your teeth. 

Give us a Call Today

At Lifetime Family Dental in Gilbert, we’re experts at fighting harmful bacteria in the mouth. Give us a call and schedule a consultation. We’re with you in this battle!

Image by Joey Velasquez on Pixabay.