Mouthwash can kill good microbes in the mouth – study

Prostate cancer: Dr Hilary outlines signs and symptoms

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Research has found mouthwash can kill ‘good’ microbes in the mouth as well as ‘bad’ microbes.

Said analysis was carried out in the United States in San Diego.

The dentist who led the research, Dr Kami Hoss, said mouthwash removed microbes responsible for producing nitric oxide, a microbe linked to improved cardiovascular health and lower blood pressure.

Regular mouthwash users may subsequently be at increased risk of high blood pressure and other conditions.

This isn’t the first-time mouthwash has been criticised; in the past it has been linked to cancer.

However, this doesn’t mean mouthwash causes cancer, findings in these studies have not been backed up by subsequent data.

Meanwhile, Hoss said of their analysis mouthwashes do not kill the “toughest, roughest, little microbes around”.

They added: “These are then poised to recolonise the entire mouth, totally unchecked by the organisms that used to hold them at bay.”

Maintaining oral health is key to overall health as it can reduce the risk of mouth cancer.

There are several types of mouth cancer, however the main symptoms are:
• Mouth ulcers that are painful and do not heal within several weeks
• Unexplained, persistent lumps in the mouth or the neck that do not go away
• Unexplained loose teeth or sockets
• Unexplained, persistent numbness or an odd feeling on the lip or tongue
• Occasionally, white, or red patches on the lining of the mouth
• Changes in speech.

The NHS recommends a potential patient should see their GP or a dentist if the symptoms do not go away after three weeks.

Meanwhile, the diagnosis of cancer is set to change in the UK with the announcement pharmacies can make some cancer referrals.

Under this scheme, staff in high street pharmacies will be paid to spot signs of cancer.

The NHS say this is “part of a new drive to catch tumours early when they are easier to treat”.

Falling under the NHS Long Term Plan, the study will begin as a pilot before a potential nationwide rollout.

Speaking at the NHS Confederation Expo conference, NHS Chief Executive Amanda Pritchard announced: “The NHS will not rest in our efforts to catch cancer early and save more lives.”

She added: “These plans have the power to truly transform the way we find and treat cancer, and ultimately spare thousands of patients and their families from avoidable pain and loss.”

As well as pharmacy diagnoses, a new fleet of mobile diagnostic centres will be launched.

These “roaming liver trucks” will focus primarily on diagnosing liver cancer, one of the hardest cancers to treat.

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