The Toothpaste Test: Cannabinoids are far better at reducing the disease-causing germs on your teeth than are two leading toothpaste brands

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Cannabinoids such as CBD significantly reduce the bacterial content on dental plaque and do so at a rate far greater than two leading toothpaste brands, Colgate and Oral B, as the chart above illustrates (the higher the bar the higher the bacterial count, and the further right you go the more serious the dental problem).

Belgian researchers took dental plaque (biofilm) samples from 60 adults who were placed in 6 groups of 10 based on disease severity. They treated the plaque samples with various cannabinoids and toothpaste to see the effect on bacterial count. Finding: plaque bacterial counts were “significantly lower” in all of the samples treated with cannabinoids rather than with toothpaste, as the chart shows. (Cannabite F is an herbal toothpaste made of pomegranate and algae.)

These findings matter because dental plaque is the stuff of disease, both in your mouth and sometimes throughout your body. From the study (my emphasis):

Dental plaque is formed owing to the deposition of a combination of saliva, foods, and fluids on the tooth surface. The dental plaque formed on the tooth surface and gum line includes thousands of bacteria that convert food residues into acids, eventually leading to the initiation of dental diseases such as dental caries, gingivitis, and periodontal diseases . . . that have become a huge global burden owing to their direct relation with systemic diseases.

As the Mayo Clinic explains, the mouth is the entry point to our digestive and respiratory tracts, and so the bad bugs move south heightening the risk for infection and inflammation of the heart, blood vessels, and lungs (pneumonia).

There’s an interesting nuance to the study that the researchers say portends the future of preventive dental care: the need for an individualized approach.

You can see it when you compare the data of the 60 people. You notice that each of the five cannabinoids affects each person in the same group differently. For example, person 1 and person 10 of group 4 show CBD-treatment counts of 8 and 3, respectively. In other words, CBD reduced the bacterial load in person 10 far more than it did in person 1. This reflects the different kinds of bacteria in each persons mouth and thus the need to tailor the cannabinoid to the person. The researchers explain:

The bacterial composition of oral biofilm varies from person to person. As shown in the present study, even the efficiency of cannabinoids may vary from individual to individual owing to the nature of individual oral biofilm. Hence, a personalized approach would be appropriate to identify the best formulation of oral care that fits into the requirement and nature of biofilm of an individual. Moreover, a scheduled repetition of oral care hygiene procedures is a must to obtain the desired results as it takes a lifetime of care to achieve a healthy mouth.

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