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Sore gums and tooth decay? A help from tea tree and propolis

Sore gums and tooth decay? A help from tea tree and propolis

For the health of teeth and gums there are essential oils and extracts. The excessive use of antibiotics has led microorganisms to become more and more resistant, which is why researchers are striving to find natural but equally powerful alternatives to drugs to preserve the health of the oral cavity, even, and above all, in the presence of dental prostheses. Propolis and tea tree appear to be two very promising remedies to combat periodontitis, bleeding gums but also candidiasis and tooth decay. This is evident from a recent scientific research published in the Molecules journal by an Italian and Polish team (Wiatrak et al, Molecules, 2021).

Essential oils and extracts for oral health

Essential oils are well known and appreciated in aromatherapy. However, their field of use is much broader and ranges from cosmetics to medicine, especially as regards dental health. In fact, some essential oils are characterized by antiseptic, antifungal and analgesic properties. For example, essential oils used in the dental field are clove oil, an anti-inflammatory and pain reliever, but also eucalyptus oil, which is antifungal, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant. Not only that, cinnamon oil counteracts the growth and proliferation of bacteria and fungi, without side effects and also without causing deterioration in the case of dental prostheses. Tea tree oil is also a powerful antiseptic, it counteracts candidiasis of the oral cavity and angular cheilitis, which manifests itself with small cuts on the sides of the mouth. In addition to essential oils, propolis extracts have also proved useful in counteracting tooth decay and periodontitis, resulting in anti-inflammatory and antifungal properties. It has been observed that propolis can be even more powerful than dexamethasone, a corticosteroid drug generally used following interventions in the mouth and tooth extractions, in counteracting inflammation and leading to rapid healing of the mouth and gums. To better understand the health effects of tea tree and propolis on the teeth, scientists have developed a study carried out on people with dental prostheses, and therefore more at risk of inflammation and infections.

Tea tree and propolis counter inflammation and infections in the mouth

Scientists have recruited 50 people, all with a dental prosthesis. The volunteers were divided into two groups. The first group was asked to use a tea tree and propolis toothpaste, the second was used as a control. After a month, the study participants underwent visits and analyzes to assess the health of the oral cavity, the presence of bleeding from the gums, plaque, any inflammation and bacteria. What emerged was that those who had used toothpaste with tea tree and propolis no longer had gum bleeding, which was instead present in all the volunteers at the beginning of the experiment. Not only that, in those who had used tea tree and propolis toothpaste, bacteria and fungi in the oral cavity were also reduced, with benefits for combating tooth decay, periodontitis and candidiasis. In particular, tea tree and propolis have been shown to work in synergy to increase the antimicrobial action, which thus turned out to be greater than that of the two remedies taken individually.

Toothpastes and mouthwashes

So, tea tree and propolis, even better if used together to increase their action, are two very promising remedies for oral health, even in case of increased risk of inflammation or infections such as when using prostheses of the teeth. You can choose, as in the studio, tea tree and propolis toothpastes, but you can also use these two remedies to make mouthwashes. In a glass of water add 10-20 drops of propolis and 2-3 drops of tea tree essential oil, use to rinse, without swallowing.
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