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Probiotics are all the craze in health and wellness these days. Everywhere you look on social media there’s a new probiotic for things like gut health. We often think of healthy gut bacteria to promote digestion and whole-body wellness but, have you ever thought about probiotics for your overall oral health?
With our mouths serving as the very beginning of our digestive tract, it only makes sense we would also want to ensure healthy bacteria at the entrance to our gastrointestinal (GI) system. Our mouths need healthy, balanced bacterial levels just like our gut does. Surprisingly, those bacteria are different, so you’ll need to use different probiotics to promote a healthy oral flora.
When it comes down to how the best oral probiotics work, the forms they’re available in, and the best benefits of incorporating oral probiotics into your oral hygiene routine, there are several great options on the market today.
Oral probiotics work just like any other probiotic you would take. But before we explain how they work, what exactly is a probiotic? Oral probiotics are a combination of live microorganisms that are beneficial for a proper balance of naturally occurring microorganisms within your body. You’re probably the most familiar with gut probiotics. These can often be found in products like yogurt, drinks, supplements, or fermented foods like kombucha and kimchi. The best oral probiotics are specific microorganisms that help to balance your oral microbiome, or good bacteria in your mouth!
The makeup of bacteria in our mouth specifically is known as the oral microbiome or oral flora. Oral probiotics help strengthen your immune system and restore balance to the beneficial bacteria colonies that live in your mouth. That’s right, the good germs. Probiotics do this by promoting the growth of the healthiest bacteria for mouth and reducing the growth of oral bacteria that can cause damage to our smiles (think gum disease and cavities!)
While the idea of oral probiotics is very similar to gut probiotics, there are some differences. Strains of bacteria are different for oral health than gut health, as well as the way they’re delivered; some types work better than others.
Oral probiotics come in specific forms that are the most beneficial and most effective for oral health, specifically. Unlike gut probiotics, oral probiotics must be strains of microorganisms that are specific to your mouth. The forms in which oral probiotics are available should encourage the growth of beneficial bacteria on surfaces in your mouth to promote the growth of new, healthy microorganisms. Here’s what I’m talking about:
With all this talk of the best oral probiotics, it can be super overwhelming when you’re trying to choose which probiotic product is best for you or which one you want to buy. I’ve got you covered! Below we my top 6 oral probiotics picks, the key features that make them worthwhile, and what makes these products some of the best in the business.
Burst oral probiotics are created to significantly reduce bad breath by altering the odorous microorganisms in your mouth. Burst’s blend of probiotics was carefully chosen by clinical research to ensure the most effective strains of good bacteria were chosen. These probiotics encourage healthy balances of bacteria that support fresher smelling breath while discouraging the growth of the bad smelling germs and improving gum health!
Each lozenge contains 6 BILLION CFU. That’s a lot of microorganisms for our mouth. But the more, the merrier if you want your breath to stay fresh all day long. Burst also touts that their product contains high concentrations of BLIS K12TM and BLIS M-18TM, both of which are oral probiotic strains proven to support a healthy balance for great oral health.
If you are looking to tackle your stubborn bad breath, Burst oral probiotics may be the perfect option for you. You can buy a bottle for $34.99 or get it cheaper through a subscription. With almost 1,000 5-star reviews, this product is the most promising! Also, Burst makes a ton of fun and effective oral health products that you can browse through while on their website.
Viome is not a typical oral probiotic, but I wanted to include them because they are the Apple of oral probiotics! That also means it's quite expensive! The Viome Oral Health Test is designed to tackle the root causes of gum inflammation, problematic teeth, and bad breath. By identifying and targeting oral microbial activity responsible for these issues, Viome provides users with valuable insights into their oral health. Using advanced RNA technology, Viome's test highlights key signals that allow for a proactive approach to oral health. But remember THIS DOES NOT REPLACE BRUSHING AND FLOSSING!
The Viome Oral Health Test is like a fitness test for your mouth, offering a proactive approach to address and prevent harmful effects associated with opportunistic bacteria in your oral microbiome. I like that they provide personalized insights and recommendations for foods, supplements, and oral biotics to improve not only your oral health but also your overall well-being. It's very expensive but if you're seeking a comprehensive and proactive approach to oral health, Viome's Oral Health Test is a valuable tool to consider.
Naturewise chewable probiotic tablets are made for adults and children to support their oral health and upper respiratory health including their ears, nose, and throat.
These mint flavored chewable tablets contain 3 billion CFU per tablet and are great for kids as they’re easily chewable. It’s important to note that this product may contain trace amounts of milk protein due to the fermentation process. It also contains stevia extract for a sweeter flavor for those that prefer it!
Naturewise is proud to announce all their supplements are manufactured right here in the USA. You can purchase a bottle of 50 Naturewise oral health chewable probiotic tablets for $26 on Amazon.
cariPRO probiotics not only boost your oral health by reducing harmful plaque bacteria (which can cause cavities and plaque buildup on your teeth,) but it also helps to balance your sinus health as well! As some of the best oral probiotics, these tablets come in a tasty pomegranate berry flavor that will support the immune function inside your mouth. You might wonder why CariPRO claims to build and replenish the microbiome in your mouth and sinuses, but they’re both closely connected, so it shouldn’t come as a big surprise!
Each pomegranate berry tablet contains about 3 billion CFU. By loading up on the good bacteria, you will crowd out the bad bacteria that can cause cavities, gum disease and poor immune function. This probiotic is sugar-free, vegetarian friendly, egg-free, non-GMO, and gluten-free. It’s one of the cleaner options when it comes to ingredients.
You can find cariPRO on their website for $24 for a trial bottle containing 30 tablets or you can choose from a 60 or 90-day supply. If you’re looking for an oral probiotic that does it all, this is a great option!
We simply could not review dental probiotic products without mentioning Replenish the Good dental probiotic (I mean, they have over 8,935 4.1 star reviews on Amazon!) These probiotics support oral health and are designed to reduce your risk of tooth decay, gum disease, bad breath, and prevent infections in your mouth and sinuses.
With 60 chewable mint flavored tablets, a bottle of Replenish the Good probiotic tablets will cost you around $29 for a one-time order. This product is proud of its stable shelf life that allows the product to last longer when it is sitting in your medicine or kitchen cabinet (think cool, dry spaces,) making it one of the best oral probiotics when it comes to having on hand. This product boasts clean ingredients as it is free of artificial sweeteners, dairy, yeast, gluten and preservatives.
This probiotic option is great for those who are looking for a reasonable price, long shelf life, and clean ingredients. It’s important to note that this product is marketed towards adults only.
Oral Complete probiotics include a maximum strength formula to boost your oral health as much as possible. This probiotic comes in 120 capsules per bottle, which gives you a 60 day supply.
Oral Complete maximum strength claims to not only support your oral health in terms of reducing harmful bacteria that leads to tooth decay and gum disease, but also to support the reduction in tonsil stone presence, staining on teeth, and tooth sensitivities.
While Oral Complete certainly boasts a lot of product claims, you need to try it for yourself to really feel the effects. This product costs about $35 and can return them if you are unhappy with the product.
Now that you know what the best oral health probiotics are, what’s the true benefit of taking in more bacteria for your mouth? Can it really improve your oral health? The fact of the matter is, it’s easier to get certain “bad” oral health conditions when we don’t have that ideal balance of healthy microorganisms in our mouths.
In order to truly understand how probiotics can benefit our oral health we first need to understand some basic science when discussing how all of this works. One of the most important things we need to understand is dysbiosis, which is a condition where there’s a disruption in the balance of bacteria colonies. We can experience dysbiosis in our gut and inside our mouth, but today we are focusing on the mouth! When this imbalance of microorganisms occurs, it can lead to the conditions like the following:
When choosing a probiotic to add to your oral health routine, it’s important to know what to look for. Not all probiotic products are made equally! Here are some of the most important things to look for to better help you make the right decision for you and your family:
This list is probably the most important thing to pay attention to. With certain dietary restrictions and allergies, you need to check the ingredient list to be sure it’s a safe and effective option for the people in your family. Look out for the basics like gluten, dairy, and artificial sweeteners. If you have an allergy and don’t see a clear label on whether or not the ingredient is listed, you may want to find one that clearly states if it’s present or not!
Most of the oral probiotics you find will come in a few different “designs” so to speak. These can include chewable tablets, capsules, and even occasionally liquid or powders. Also, be sure to look for the types that include variations for children or adults only, as this is important for the safety of younger children.
Always be sure to read the serving size or dosing amount when taking an oral probiotic. While some bottles will contain 120 tablets, its actually only a 60 day supply as you may need to take two at a time or one twice daily.
This one will vary for everyone, but price can matter! If you’re looking to stay on a budget, a cheaper option does not necessarily mean a lesser quality. You can also get deals through places like Amazon, and sometimes these products will be cheaper if you purchase a 3-month supply or enroll in a subscription. Browse your options for the best price and then make your decision!
Don’t let your oral probiotic choices overwhelm you! Remember, this is to improve your oral health, not stress you out. By incorporating an oral probiotic into your daily brushing and flossing routine, you are setting yourself up for future success. Your dental provider will be ecstatic to learn you’re enhancing your oral wellness through probiotic supplements (as long as you’re still brushing and flossing, too!) If you struggle with things like chronic bad breath, cavities that seem to never end, gum disease, or tonsil stones that just won’t go away, talk you your dental provider about oral probiotics to see if they’re right for you.