10 Tips to Boost Your Oral Microbiome

10 Tips to Boost Your Oral Microbiome

What is the oral microbiome and why is it important?

Did you know your mouth is teeming with life? Trillions of bacteria, viruses, and fungi call your mouth home, forming a complex ecosystem called the oral microbiome.

Just like the gut microbiome, maintaining a balanced oral microbiome is essential for good health. It helps fight off harmful bacteria, prevents bad breath, and even contributes to overall well-being.

Studies have shown that an imbalanced oral microbiome can be linked to various health problems, including heart disease, diabetes, and even Alzheimer's disease.

1. The Power of Brushing and Flossing

Brushing and flossing twice a day are the cornerstones of a healthy oral microbiome. These practices help remove plaque, a sticky film that harbors harmful bacteria.

Plaque buildup can disrupt the balance of good and bad bacteria in your mouth, leading to cavities, gum disease, and bad breath.

Brushing technique tips:

  • Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and gentle circular motions to brush all surfaces of your teeth for two minutes.
  • Don't forget to brush your tongue!
  • Replace your toothbrush every 3-4 months or sooner if the bristles become frayed.

Flossing: Floss daily for those hard-to-reach areas.

Flossing reaches between teeth where brushing can't, removing plaque and food particles that can feed bad bacteria. Terra & Co.’s Brilliant Black Dental Floss is made with plant derived ingredients like coconut oil and activated charcoal to remove daily buildup.

2. Diet for a Thriving Microbiome

Sugary foods and drinks are like candy for bad bacteria. They thrive on these simple sugars, rapidly multiplying and throwing off the balance in your mouth. This can lead to inflammation, cavities, and gum disease.

A balanced diet rich in prebiotics and probiotics is key to a healthy oral microbiome. Prebiotics act like fertilizer for good bacteria. Think of them as food that helps good bacteria flourish. Fruits, vegetables, and whole grains are all excellent sources of prebiotics. Probiotics are live bacteria that provide a direct boost to the good guys in your mouth. Yogurt with live and active cultures and fermented foods like kimchi and kombucha are good sources of probiotics.

3. Lifestyle Habits that Impact Your Oral Microbiome

Smoking and Alcohol

Smoking and excessive alcohol consumption disrupt the delicate balance of the oral microbiome. Smoking weakens the immune system's ability to fight off bad bacteria, while alcohol can dry out the mouth and create an environment where bad bacteria thrive.

Stress Management

Chronic stress can have a negative impact on your oral health. When stressed, your body produces hormones that can increase inflammation and weaken your immune system, making you more susceptible to oral problems.

4. Tongue Scraping

Your tongue can harbor bacteria that contribute to bad breath. Gently scraping your tongue daily can help remove these bacteria and freshen your breath.

Some studies suggest that tongue scraping can be more effective than just brushing your teeth for removing bacteria and reducing bad breath. It may also improve your sense of taste by removing a layer of film that can coat the tongue.

Incorporating Terra & Co.'s Gentle Green Tongue Scraper into your oral care routine is an added step that can provide many benefits. Simply scrape your tongue multiple times until it feels clean, rinsing the scraper each time. When done, clean it with warm water and natural soap, and pat dry with a towel.

5. Consider Probiotic Supplements

There is some evidence that probiotic supplements can be beneficial for oral health. Here are some of the ways that probiotics may benefit oral health:

  • Reduce plaque and gingivitis: Probiotics can help to reduce the levels of harmful bacteria in the mouth. This can help to prevent plaque buildup and gingivitis, which is the early stage of gum disease.
  • Improve bad breath: Bad breath is often caused by the buildup of sulfur-producing bacteria in the mouth. Probiotics can help to reduce the levels of these bacteria, which can improve bad breath.
  • Speed up the healing of mouth sores: Probiotics may help to speed up the healing of mouth sores, such as canker sores and cold sores.

If you are considering taking probiotic supplements for oral health, it is important to talk to your dentist first. They can help you choose the right product and make sure that it is safe for you.

6. Oil Pulling

Oil pulling is an ancient practice that involves swishing oil around your mouth for an extended period to improve oral health.

Potential benefits of oil pulling and boosting your microbiome include:

Reduced Bacteria: Proponents claim oil pulling reduces harmful bacteria in the mouth. Coconut oil, a common choice, has some antibacterial properties, potentially reducing bad breath-causing bacteria.

Balanced Microbiome: The theory is that by removing some bacteria, oil pulling creates an environment that favors the growth of good bacteria, leading to a more balanced microbiome.

7. Natural Oral Care

Terra & Co. is known for its commitment to sustainable and effective oral care products. Our offerings are specifically designed to enhance dental health through natural ingredients, and many of these ingredients also contribute to the health of the oral microbiome.

Here’s how Terra & Co.'s key ingredients positively impact your oral microbiome.

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is a primary ingredient in many Terra & Co. products, particularly those designed for oil pulling. This traditional practice involves swishing oil in your mouth to remove bacteria, toxins, and plaque.

Coconut oil is known for its antimicrobial properties, primarily due to the presence of lauric acid, which helps control harmful bacteria and reduce inflammation. This not only supports a healthy oral microbiome but also prevents dental issues like cavities and gingivitis.


Hydroxyapatite is a naturally occurring mineral form of calcium apatite and is similar to the minerals found in tooth enamel. Terra & Co. incorporates nano-hydroxyapatite in some of their toothpaste formulations.

Nano-hydroxyapatite is excellent for remineralizing teeth and repairing minor scratches on the enamel surface, which can be beneficial for the microbiome by maintaining a smooth surface where bacteria are less likely to adhere and multiply.

Neem Oil

Neem oil, used in some dental health products, offers antibacterial and antifungal properties. It helps in reducing plaque, controlling bacteria, and thus supports a balanced microbiome. Neem oil can also help in reducing gum inflammation and improving overall oral health.


Xylitol is a sugar alcohol used as a sweetener in some oral care products. It’s not just a healthier alternative to sugar but also has antibacterial properties. Xylitol inhibits the growth of Streptococcus mutans, the primary bacteria responsible for plaque and tooth decay. By reducing these harmful bacteria, xylitol helps maintain a healthier oral microbiome.

Peppermint Oil

Often used for flavoring, peppermint oil also has antibacterial properties that can help freshen breath and control harmful oral bacteria. Its cooling effect soothes inflamed gums, contributing to a healthier oral environment.

Moringa Oil

Rich in antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties, moringa oil is another beneficial ingredient for oral health. It can help reduce dental plaque, fight bad breath, and support the balance of the oral microbiome.

8. Sustainable Practices

In addition to product ingredients, Terra & Co.’s commitment to sustainable practices contributes to broader environmental health, which can indirectly impact personal health, including the oral microbiome.

By avoiding harsh chemicals and opting for biodegradable or recyclable packaging, Terra & Co. helps reduce environmental toxins that can affect our health and the microbiome.

9. Staying Hydrated

Water helps to flush away food particles and bacteria from your mouth. It also helps to produce saliva, which neutralizes acids in your mouth and helps to prevent cavities.

Water is essential for a healthy mouth. It also prevents dry mouth (which can harbor bad bacteria), and keeps your mouth tissues healthy. Aim for eight glasses of water a day for optimal oral health.

10. Regular Dental Checkups

Regular dental checkups and cleanings are crucial for maintaining a healthy oral microbiome. Professional cleanings remove plaque and tartar buildup that you can't reach at home. Your dentist can also detect early signs of gum disease and other problems before they become serious.

Terra & Co.’s products leverage these natural ingredients to promote a healthier oral microbiome while ensuring that the practices are environmentally sustainable. This approach not only helps in maintaining oral health but also aligns with the values of consumers looking for natural, effective, and eco-friendly options.


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