Mouthwash brings together two very different people – those who value oral hygiene and those who don’t. The product can be used to round up your oral hygiene routine or as a substitute for toothpaste for the really lazy. But it turns out that mouthwashes can be bad news if you workout and have a high BP. New research shows that antibacterial mouthwashes can undo the effects of exercise on blood pressure. Triclosan in Toothpaste, Mouthwash and Baby Products Probably Causing Antibacterial Resistance, Says Study.
The oral bacteria have a prominent role to play in our health. Excessive microbes in the mouth can cause gingivitis and raise the risk of oesophageal cancer. Gum diseases have also been implicated in cases of respiratory diseases and dementia. But new research says that the germs may not be all that bad. They could help the heart benefit from the workout. Mouth Ulcer Treatment: Home Remedies That Soothe Canker Sores Naturally.
How Oral Bacteria May Help Cardiovascular Health
In a new study published in the journal Free Radical Biology and Medicine, antibacterial mouthwash may interfere with the blood pressure-lowering qualities of exercise. Blood vessels dilate or open up during exercise. Nitric oxide secreted by the body expands the blood vessels, letting more blood circulate to the muscles.
Although blood circulation is high after exercising, a mechanism which lowers BP, known as postexercise hypotension is triggered immediately after. Nitric oxide is made from nitrates. Research says that nitrates from food are converted into nitric oxide by the oral bacteria, which dilates blood vessels and improves circulation.
After a rigorous bout of exercise, the expanded blood vessels carry blood to the muscles, supplying every muscle with the requisite nutrition.
How Mouthwash Reduces The Benefits of Workout
When you use mouthwash, the antibacterial ingredient kills the oral bacteria that produce nitric oxide and dilate blood vessels. To prove this, the placebo-controlled study found that there was a reduction of 5.3 milligrams of mercury in systolic blood pressure one hour after working out. But rinsing with antibacterial mouthwash caused a reduction of only 2.0 milligram of mercury.
This means oral bacteria may not be all that bad and could help optimise your exercise to reduce blood pressure.