The Link Between Gut Health And Dental Health: What You Need To Know

The Link Between Gut Health And Dental Health: What You Need To Know

Most people understand that a healthy gut keeps your immune system functioning correctly. But you might find something surprising: gut health also plays a significant role in keeping our teeth and gums healthy. Read on to learn how and why our gut and oral health are interconnected.

Understanding the Basics

Gut Health

Gut health refers to the overall well-being of your gastrointestinal (GI) tract. This part of your body, running from the mouth to the anus, includes all the organs involved in digesting food and processing nutrients (like the stomach and intestines). A healthy gut breaks down food effectively, allowing the body to absorb essential nutrients while eliminating waste.

Dental Health

Dental health pertains to the health of your mouth, including your teeth, gums, and the area supporting the teeth. Good dental health entails more than just avoiding cavities and gum disease; it also includes keeping maintaining oral bacteria that affect your oral environment.

The Connection: A Two-Way Street

The mouth is one of the starting points of the digestive system, and it houses hundreds of different types of bacteria, like the gut.

When you chew your food, you’re not just breaking it down mechanically; you’re mixing it with saliva, which contains enzymes that kick-start digestion. This means that the state of your oral health can directly influence your gut health and vice versa.

From Mouth to Gut

Poor dental health can lead to the transfer of harmful bacteria from your mouth to your gut. Conditions like gum disease can increase the number of harmful bacteria in your mouth, which you can then swallow, leading to potential disruptions in your gut microbiome. This disruption can result in digestive issues and even affect your immune system.

Gut to Mouth Influence 

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), celiac disease, or other digestive disturbances can lead to deficiencies in essential nutrients due to poor gut absorption. These deficiencies can directly impact oral health, leading to problems such as mouth ulcers, inflamed gums, and decaying teeth.

Other conditions, such as Crohn’s diseaseulcerative colitis, and even chronic diarrhoea can further exacerbate these issues by disrupting the body’s ability to absorb vitamins and minerals effectively. This malabsorption can weaken the bones and tissues that support teeth, increasing the risk of oral infections and gum disease.

Impact of Diet on Both Gut and Dental Health

Eating a balanced, fibre-rich diet can help regulate the gut’s microbiome and stimulate saliva flow. Saliva removes food particles and neutralises harmful acids, helping to protect against tooth decay.

Probiotics: A Link Between Gut Health and Dental Health

Probiotics are celebrated for their benefits to gut health and are crucial in maintaining and improving oral health.

Inflammation often causes periodontal diseases, which affect the gums and bones that support the teeth. Studies have shown that specific strains of probiotics can help combat this inflammation, effectively supporting treatments for gum diseases like gingivitis and periodontitis.

Probiotics also help reduce the presence of harmful oral bacteria. The mouth is a complex ecosystem where harmful bacteria can thrive, leading to dental problems such as tooth decay and bad breath. Probiotics compete with these harmful bacteria for space and nutrients, crowding them out. Some probiotics even produce substances that naturally kill harmful bacteria, further protecting your teeth and gums from decay and disease.

Lastly, probiotics can help to freshen your breath. Bad breath, or halitosis, often results from the activity of harmful bacteria in the mouth and gut. By balancing the bacterial environment in both areas, probiotics can help reduce the odours produced by these bacteria, leading to fresher breath.

Eating probiotic-rich foods, such as yogurt, or taking probiotic supplements ensures you get an effective dose of these beneficial bacteria.

Practical Tips for Managing Both

  • Maintain Good Oral Hygiene: Brushing and flossing twice daily can reduce the risk of harmful bacteria migrating from your mouth to your gut.
  • Stay Hydrated: Drinking plenty of water throughout the day helps maintain saliva flow, which is crucial for washing away food particles and bacteria and aiding digestion.


Taking good care of your oral health ensures a bright smile and supports your digestive health and overall well-being. So next time you brush your teeth, remember you’re doing more than polishing up your smile – you’re also taking a step toward better gut health.

If you would like to leave a comment


Enter your keyword