How Many Bacteria Live in Your Mouth?

Woman’s tongue at oral bacteria dentist in Green Lake.You might not want to think about it, but your mouth is home to a variety of bacteria. Research shows there are between 500 to 650 different species lingering on your teeth, tongue, gums, and cheeks at any given time. If you’re cringing at just the thought, there’s more you need to know. Not all species are bad. In fact, there are several good species that are crucial to a healthy smile. Your oral bacteria dentist in Green Lake strives to ensure there is the right balance in your mouth to make certain your teeth and gums thrive. Here’s how you can ensure bad bacteria don’t damage your smile/

How Many Species of Bacteria are in My Mouth?

Through a very thorough process, researchers have harvested plaque from the teeth and oral surfaces to categorize one type of bacteria. On average, plaque has a weight of 10 mg per tooth surface. With your teeth only accounting for 1/20 of all oral surfaces, that weight must be multiplied by 20 to find the total biomass that includes the tongue, cheeks, and other oral tissues.

Researchers determined that for every milligram of biomass in your mouth (which refers to the weight of the tissues that make up your teeth, gums, cheeks, and other oral tissues) there are about 100 million microbes. When the number of microbes in 1 mg form is multiplied by 20, they can estimate the amount found in the entire oral cavity.

How Fast Does Oral Bacteria Grow?

Your mouth is the perfect breeding ground for bacteria to thrive in all the “wrong” places. Different species can accumulate in certain areas of the mouth. As an example, the bacteria found on your tongue differs considerably from what are on your teeth.

When the bacteria communities aren’t removed regularly, they will continue to multiply. Research shows their numbers can double every 20 minutes under the ideal conditions, which is why it’s crucial to combat the rate of growth to prevent common oral health issues, like tooth decay and gum disease.

How Can I Reduce Oral Bacteria?

There are several things you can do to help control the growth rate of the bad bacteria in your mouth, such as:

  • Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and tartar control toothpaste at least twice a day.
  • Clean all surfaces of your teeth, tongue, and cheeks for at least two minutes each session.
  • Use high-quality floss to remove bacteria from between each tooth and around the gum line.
  • Limit your consumption of foods and drinks containing high amounts of sugars and starches.
  • Treat dry mouth by drinking plenty of water or using a special mouthwash.
  • Visit your dentist at least every 6 months for a cleaning and checkup.

Promote a Healthy Smile Today

You can ensure a proper balance between good and bad bacteria in your mouth by committing to your oral hygiene habits at home. By limiting the harmful species, you’ll ensure the good bacteria promotes your dental health.

About Oak Tree Dental Care

Oak Tree Dental Care strives to create healthy smiles that last through personalized services. Dr. Amin Tabatabaian offers a variety of preventive, restorative, and cosmetic treatments to help you achieve optimal oral health. If it’s time for your next cleaning and checkup, contact our office today to schedule an appointment.

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