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Probiotics as an Adjunct Therapy for the Treatment of Halitosis, Dental Caries and Periodontitis


Probiotics and prebiotics are popular among consumers worldwide as natural approaches to prevent gastrointestinal diseases. The effects of their consumption on the gastrointestinal system have been extensively investigated. Recently, the efficacy of probiotics and prebiotics has been evaluated against naturally developing microbiome imbalance in the human body, such as in the oral cavity, skin, female urogenital tract, and respiratory tract. This review examines the scientific data related to the effects of probiotics on the treatment of diseases occurring in the oral cavity. Probiotics can effectively prevent and treat some infectious diseases in the oral cavity, such as halitosis and periodontitis, and can reduce the development of dental caries and the concentration of harmful bacteria, according to clinical studies. The results of this meta-analysis also suggest the use of probiotics to treat halitosis and periodontitis. However, the evidence may be inconclusive due in part to the use of a wide range of probiotics, non-standardized study design, small population size, poor quality reports, and inconsistent data. Therefore, future studies should homogenize terms and definitions for primary and secondary outcomes, increase the number of volunteers/patients in in vitro tests and clinical studies, and include an evaluation of the combined use of pre- and probiotics.

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This research was supported by CONICYT through FONDECYT project 11160249.

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Correspondence to Mariela Bustamante.

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Bustamante, M., Oomah, B.D., Mosi-Roa, Y. et al. Probiotics as an Adjunct Therapy for the Treatment of Halitosis, Dental Caries and Periodontitis. Probiotics & Antimicro. Prot. 12, 325–334 (2020).

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  • Probiotics
  • Oral cavity
  • Oral diseases
  • Oral health