"use the floss Luke"

Thursday, 21 February 2013

A little biochemistry - pay attention there will be a test...

Before todays lesson, a slight digression - let's get one thing straight, mouth bacteria are friendly bacteria, they prevent us getting infections with pathogenic organisms. Disinfectant mouthwashes should be avoided

And so to the main point of todays post, the biochemistry of dental misery...

Basically it's all about acid (stop sniggering at the back). More precisely it's all about the acid produced by bacteria during anaerobic respiration.

Mouth bacteria will use oxygen for respiration when it's available. That's aerobic respiration and produces mainly water and carbon dioxide, which is COMPLETELY HARMLESS.

When there is no oxygen they will change to anaerobic respiration which produces acidic end products, amongst other things.

An acid environment causes tooth structure to dissolve and gums to get inflamed.

THE TEST:

One question. You have sixty seconds, write on one side of the internet only, begin...

1. WHAT, when present, will prevent tooth decay and gum disease?

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