Improved oral hygiene for children aged between 3 and10 is the aim of a new probiotic-based natural chew, designed to fight harmful bacteria and help to maintain tooth health, from Florida-based biopharmaceutical company Oragenics.
The cherry flavored chew acts in tooth crevices on the chewing surfaces of teeth, where toothbrushes and floss cannot reach, to control harmful bacteria, the company’s chief scientific officer, Dr Jeffrey Hillman told FoodNavigatorUSA.com.
The active ingredient of EvoraKids contains 300m colony forming units of the patent-pending ProBiora3 probiotic blend which includes S. uberis KJ2, S. oralis KJ3, S. rattus JH145. Other ingredients include the natural sweetener erythritol, microcrystaline cellulose, natural cherry flavor, stearic acid, magnesium stearate and red beet juice.
The company recommends that children put one chew on their tongue each morning and evening, a few minutes after brushing. As the chew dissolves in saliva, it should be spread around the mouth onto all of the teeth just by swishing for 30 seconds.
“Kids…are much more likely than adults to form cavities,” said Dr Hillman. “The probiotics in EvoraKids effectively compete with certain harmful bacteria for both nutrients and space on tooth surfaces. Daily application of the special blend of probiotics in EvoraKids will help support healthy teeth in children.”
The chew should be used in conjunction with good oral hygiene, including brushing and flossing, good diet and nutrition without too much sugar together with fluoride in the drinking water and toothpaste.
Up to 90 per cent of cavities in children occur on the chewing surfaces of their teeth, according to the Journal of the American Dental Association. The major cause of tooth decay is Streptococcus mutans, a common bacteria found in dental plaque. It thrives in people with diets high in sugar, and particularly children who enjoy sugary foods and have not learned the need for good oral hygiene.
Promoting a high standard of dental health in childhood is important for adult health too, said Dr Hillman.
As people age, the risk of a variety of serious health issues, including heart disease and stroke, rises with poor oral health.
Meanwhile, worldwide oral hygiene standards are falling. “The worldwide trend is for more decay, particularly in the poorer socioeconomic class and developing countries. Sugary and starchy foods constitute a greater percentage of all of our diets,” said Dr Hillman.
“There is also a trend away from fluoridated tap water to bottled water, resulting in weaker tooth structure. Tooth decay is the most common chronic infectious disease in the world; 5bn people worldwide have had it at some point in their lives.”