The importance of balanced oral flora

Oral health, oral flora


The oral cavity contains a balance of good and bad bacteria. In a healthy mouth, the good bacteria keep the bad bacteria in check. However when the balance is upset or the mouth is not cleaned properly, the bad bacteria can get the upper hand. The oral cavity houses many different types of bacteria and fungi, good and bad. All these micro-organisms, which are collectively known as oral flora, form part of an oral ecosystem. They contribute to the oral biofilm, a soft and sticky deposit which accumulates on and in between teeth. These bacteria feed on sugars and food debris present in the mouth. 

The bacteria of a balanced flora help to keep the mouth working properly by keeping teeth and gums healthy, fighting the many environmental attacks and assisting with the pre-digestion of foods.

Bacteria forming an unbalanced flora are harmful to the mouth. Therefore, these need to be removed regularly.



The mouth is subject to daily attacks from dietary, lifestyle and physiological factors. The oral flora evolves throughout life depending on age, hormones, stress and many external factors. The oral flora can be unbalanced by:

  • Poor oral hygiene
  • Daily diet
  • Drinking alcohol
  • Smoking
  • Certain diseases such as diabetes or cancer
  • Taking antibiotics
  • Orthodontic treatment etc.


When the balance of the oral flora is disrupted, these bad bacteria can multiply and cause cavities or gum disease over time. Faced with these various attackers, optimal oral hygiene is essential. Thanks to brushing, mouthwashes and the use of dental floss, you can reduce the development of oral plaque, which helps to maintain the balance of the flora and consequently reduces the proliferation of bad bacteria. These daily habits help you to protect your teeth and gums by maintaining good oral health.

Ref: J&J internal data

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