Mouthwash is a common oral care product, but while good for oral health, it may not be as good when it comes to the heart.
Oral health is known to be associated with a healthy nervous system, and studies have shown that certain forms of gum disease can increase the risk of developing neurodegenerative conditions.
According to Dentistry Today, using mouthwash can increase blood pressure. A team of researchers found that a chemical in mouthwash known as “chlorhexidine” can kill beneficial bacteria that produce nitric oxide (or nitric oxide, NO), which in turn raises systolic blood pressure.
Professor Nathan Bryan said: “Nitric oxide is one of the most important signaling molecules produced in the human body. Because nitric oxide is a ubiquitous signaling unit, systemic exposure to oral bacteria could have important implications for human health beyond maintaining blood pressure.” .
How did they discover that mouthwash has this effect?
The researchers used genetic sequencing and rRNA analysis to find out if the introduction of chlorhexidine mouthwash was associated with a change in the bacterial composition of the tongue.
They found that mouthwash affects bacterial structure and affects blood pressure, but only affects one type of blood pressure.
There are two types of blood pressure, both of which form a blood pressure reading.
These two numbers are known as systolic and diastolic blood pressure, and they must be at a certain level in every person to be considered healthy.
Systolic blood pressure is the force with which the heart pumps blood throughout the body, while diastolic blood pressure is the resistance to blood flow in the blood vessels.
Researchers have found that mouthwash increases systolic blood pressure.
Can systolic blood pressure be improved by improving oral health?
The researchers concluded that the tongue microbiome can be controlled through regular brushing and appropriate dietary changes.
Professor Bryan added: “We know that one cannot be healthy without enough nitric oxide circulating throughout the body. However, the first thing more than 200 million Americans do every day is use an antiseptic mouthwash, which kills the beneficial bacteria that help form nitric oxide.
He pointed out that evidence for the presence of nitric oxide-producing bacteria in the mouth could help maintain normal blood pressure, giving scientists and researchers a new goal to help those suffering from high blood pressure.
The best way to deal with high blood pressure
Blood pressure can be controlled and reduced in many ways, especially through lifestyle changes. Examples of these methods include:
– Reduce salt intake
Eat a balanced low-fat diet
– stay active
– Decrease in alcohol consumption
– lose weight
Eat less caffeine
– Quit smoking