August 28/London/World Dental -- Tea is one of the most delicious and popular beverages on Earth, consumed by people of all ages, all over the world. Now the good news is scientists have brought to light that regular tea consumption helps maintain a healthy smile for longer.

Particularly, the consumption of black tea is said to fight off the apparition of gum disease and dental decay. People who consume a minimum of three cups of good quality black tea per day, will actually annihilate two types of dangerous bacteria that reside within the mouth and that are responsible for the development of gum disease and dental cavities. These two bacteria are the Lactobacillus and the Streptococcus mutans.

Study leader Dr. Carrie Ruxton said that -- in order to combat these bacteria -- one would need to consume regularly about three to fourcups of high quality black tea daily. Scientists state that the bacteria-annihilating effect of black tea is still powerful even if the tea consumed contains sugar.

Oral health will benefit from green tea as well. Researchers have proved that regular consumption of green tea helps preventing bad breath by neutralizing all the damaging sulphur compounds which bring about the foul breath, plus green tea also protects against the development of cavities and the apparition of gum disease.

The scientific review on the benefits of tea upon general oral health has been published in the British Nutrition Foundation’s Nutrition Bulletin. Dr. Ruxton argues that drinking regularly tea indeed helps protecting against tooth loss which is caused by gum disease (infection of the gums caused by harmful bacteria buildup).

When the harmful bacteria are thriving within the mouth, they react to carbohydrates that one consumes and thus dangerous acid is produced which eats away at the dental enamel. Once the enamel is destroyed, the bacteria will just keep “digging” within the dental pulp and the tissues creating havoc and sooner or later gum disease will develop.

Both black tea and green tea help reducing inflammation within the mouth, and thanks to precious compounds, the bacteria will not be allowed to adhere to teeth and tissues and grow further. The teas also contain very important antioxidants known as catechins and flavonoids which have a very strong antimicrobial effect. When inflammation is reduced, the danger of developing dental cavities or gingivitis is also greatly reduced.