bad breath dry socket

Bad Breath? Dry Socket? Honey May Help

                   Some formulations concocted by                    history’s earliest doctors were                    based more on superstition than                    science. However, modern                    medicine is discovering-or                    rediscovering-a few ancient                    treatments with true medicinal                    qualities. One of these is honey,                    reports an article in General                    Dentistry, the peer-reviewed                    journal of the Academy of General                    Dentistry (AGD).

“Honey was used in a poultice                    thousands of years ago,” says                    Eric Curtis, DDS, MAGD,                    spokesperson for the AGD, an organization of general dentists dedicated to                    continuing education. “Over time, its uses were written off as folklore.”                   

While honey is most often thought of as food, researchers are finding its                    curative qualities for fighting wound infections quite effective–and natural.                   

In fact, research is beginning to prove honey’s effectiveness as an                    antibacterial and anti-inflammatory agent in treating oral problems, such as                    periodontal disease, mouth ulcers and wounds from oral surgery, as well as                    preventing the development of dry socket after tooth extraction. What’s even                    more appealing to dentists is that despite applying properly prepared honey                    on or near teeth, it won’t cause cavities.                   

Honey is the result of ripened nectar mixed with enzymes from bees. These                    enzymes contain antibacterial qualities. And because nectar is a plant                    secretion, honey also can contain phytochemicals, some of which act as                    antioxidants that prevent the erosion of tissue surrounding teeth as a result of                    an infection. Unlike antibiotics, honey will not cause adverse side effects.                   

However, don’t rush to your local grocer and start stocking up on those                    honey-filled plastic bears. “Honey can vary widely in the potency of its                    antibacterial agents,” Dr. Curtis says, “it needs to be specifically selected                    and prepared for the purpose.” And while antibacterial honey is commercially                    available, honeys with high-levels of anti-inflammatory and antioxidant                    qualities are still being researched. Also, honey, like other foods, begins to                    dissolve once it comes in contact with saliva. Work is being done to develop a           gelled honey for wound dressings that is slow to break down in the mouth