The Role Of Plants In The Treatment Of Diseases Caused By Micro-Organisms Based In The Natural Prod…

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Oral diseases are major health problems with dental caries and periodontal diseases among the most important preventable global infectious diseases. Oral health influences the general quality of life and poor oral health is linked to chronic conditions and systemic diseases. The association between oral diseases and the oral microbiota is well established. Of the more than 750 species of bacteria that inhabit the oral cavity, a number are implicated in oral diseases. The development of dental caries involves acidogenic and aciduric Gram-positive bacteria (mutans streptococci, lactobacilli and actinomycetes). Periodontal diseases have been linked to anaerobic Gram-negative bacteria (Porphyromonas gingivalis, Actinobacillus, Prevotella and Fusobacterium). Given the incidence of oral disease, increased resistance by bacteria to antibiotics, adverse affects of some antibacterial agents currently used in dentistry and financial considerations in developing countries, there is a need for alternative prevention and treatment options that are safe, effective and economical. While several agents are commercially available, these chemicals can alter oral microbiota and have undesirable side-effects such as vomiting, diarrhea and tooth staining. Hence, the search for alternative products continues and natural phytochemicals isolated from plants used as traditional medicines are considered as good alternatives. In this review, plant extracts or phytochemicals that inhibit the growth of oral pathogens, reduce the development of biofilms and dental plaque, influence the adhesion of bacteria to surfaces and reduce the symptoms of oral diseases will be discussed further. Clinical studies that have investigated the safety and efficacy of such plant-derived medicines will also be described.Micro-Organisms

1. Introduction

Oral diseases continue to be a major health problem worldwide . Dental caries and periodontal diseases are among the most important global oral health problems, although conditions such as oral and pharyngeal cancers and oral tissue lesions are also significant health concerns . Despite general advances in the overall health status of the people living in industrialized countries, including oral and dental health, the prevalence of dental caries in school aged children is up to 90% and the majority of adults are also affected. Oral health is integral to general well-being and relates to the quality of life that extends beyond the functions of the craniofacial complex. There is a considerable evidence linking poor oral health to chronic conditions, for example, there is a strong association between severe periodontal diseases and diabetes . There is also evidence linking poor oral health and systemic diseases, such as cardiovascular diseases, rheumatoid arthritis and osteoporosis , while periodontal diseases and may also contribute to the risk of pregnancy complications, such as preterm low-birth weight. Tooth loss, caused by poor periodontal health (which affects up to 20% of the adult population worldwide) can lead to significant morbidity and premature death . The economic impact of oral diseases is an important consideration with up to 10% of public health expenditure in developed countries related to curative dental care . In most developing countries, expenditure in oral health care is low; access to dental healthcare is limited and is generally restricted to emergency dental care or pain relief. While there has been a marked improvement in oral health in most developed countries worldwide, populations of dentally disadvantaged individuals exist in these countries, often indigenous child populations and those people of low socio-economic status, where oral health is deteriorating Micro-Organisms

The link between oral diseases and the activities of microbial species that form part of the microbiota of the oral cavity is well established . Over 750 species of bacteria inhabit the oral cavity (50% of which are yet to be identified) and a number of these are implicated in oral diseases. The development of dental caries involves acidogenic and aciduric Gram-positive bacteria, primarily the mutans streptococci (Streptococcus mutans and S. sobrinus), lactobacilli and actinomycetes, which metabolize sucrose to organic acids (mainly lactic acid) that dissolve the calcium phosphate in teeth, causing decalcification and eventual decay. Dental caries is thus a supragingival condition. In contrast, periodontal diseases are subgingival conditions that have been linked to anaerobic Gram-negative bacteria such as Porphyromonas gingivalis, Actinobacillus sp., Prevotella sp. and Fusobacterium spIn periodontal diseases, the areas at or below the gingival crevice become infected causing a cellular inflammatory response of the gingiva and surrounding connective tissue. These inflammatory responses can manifest as gingivitis (extremely common and seen as bleeding of the gingival or gum tissues) or periodontitis (the inflammatory response results in loss of collagen attachment of the tooth to the bone and in loss of bone).Micro-Organisms

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