Objectives: Probiotics consists of live microbes which are free from adverse health effects and also provide basic nutritive value to individuals when ingested in adequate quantities. Dental caries and periodontal diseases are the most common oral diseases affecting mankind. This study was conducted to evaluate the antimicrobial capabilities of oral probiotics against microorganisms involved in dental caries and periodontal diseases and to evaluate the gingival and periodontal health status of children affected with Early Childhood Caries (ECC) after use of oral probiotics. Methods: Sixty children, age group 3-5 years, affected with ECC were randomly distributed under control and probiotics administered test group for 90 days. The gingival, periodontal and oral hygiene status was evaluated along with their caries activity test. The parameters were measured at 0, 15, 30, 45, 60, 75 and 90 days interval. Results: The oral probiotics consumption significantly reduced the plaque accumulation between days of observation in the treated group (P< 0.05) .There was significant improvement in the gingival and periodontal status in the tested group (P< 0.05). Snyder test was conducted to assess caries activity. Out of 30 subjects caries inactivity was shown in 22 subjects (score 0), limited caries activity in 4 subjects (score 1), definitive in 4 subjects (8.9%) (score 2) and none showed marked caries activity (score3). Conclusion: The results show that the regular consumption of oral probiotics significantly reduces the plaque accumulation, calculus formation and caries activity among the test group.
Key words: Early Childhood Caries, Oral Probiotics, Caries Activity, OHI, Snyder Test.