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BioMed Research International
Volume 2018, Article ID 8687608, 8 pages
Research Article

Salivary Markers and Microbial Flora in Mouth Breathing Late Adolescents

1MeSVA, University of L’Aquila, L’Aquila, Italy
2Dental School, Vita-Salute San Raffaele University, Milan, Italy

Correspondence should be addressed to Alessandro Nota; moc.liamg@aton.ordnassela.rd

Received 2 October 2017; Accepted 5 February 2018; Published 5 March 2018

Academic Editor: Enita Nakaš

Copyright © 2018 Stefano Mummolo et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Objective. This is a 6-month observational case-control study that aims to estimate plaque index (PI), salivary flow, buffering capacity of saliva, and specific Streptococcus mutans (S. mutans) and Lactobacillus rates in a mouth breathing late adolescents sample, after a professional oral hygiene procedure and home oral hygiene instructions. Subjects and Methods. A sample of 20 mouth breathing late adolescents/young adults (average: ; range: 18–23 years) and a matched control group of nose breathing subjects (average: ; range 18–23 years) were included in the study. All the participants were subjected to a professional oral hygiene procedure and appropriate home oral hygiene instructions (t0). After three months (t1) and six months (t2), the PI, salivary flow, buffering capacity of saliva, and S. mutans and Lactobacilli rates were recorded. Results. The mean buffering capacity of saliva and the salivary flow rate showed no significant difference between the two groups, all over the observational period. For PI, a significantly higher mode (score 1 of PI) was observed in the study group at t1 (score 0 = 35% of subjects; score 1 = 60%; score 2 = 5%) and t2 (score 1 = 65% of subjects, score 2 = 35%), with respect to control group. Furthermore, mouth breathing subjects show a significant 4 times higher risk to develop S. mutans CFU > 105 (CI lower limit: 0.95; CI upper limit: 9.48; chi-square: 4.28; ), with respect to the control subjects. Conclusions. Mouth breathing late adolescents show a significantly higher risk to develop S. mutans CFU > 105 and an increased level of PI. Interceptive orthodontic treatments in growing subjects, like palatal expansion, are encouraged to improve the nasal air flow. In older subjects, orthodontic treatments should be performed with removable appliances like clear aligners, in order to allow a better oral hygiene level.