Does kissing affect oral health?

There are many opinions about the importance of kissing and the effect thereof; it is widely believed that a passionate kiss not only improves the mood of the persons involved, but also helps reduce stress and headache, accelerates the bloodstream, boosts the immune system and strengthens the enamel of the teeth!

But, during a kiss, can the kissers exchange bacteria that may cause various health problems? To find out if kissing may be bad for your health and what needs to be remembered as you set about your Valentines traditions, here is what Inita Čeire, licensed dental hygienist at the dental clinic SIROWA Rīga, has to say.

Saliva is a natural protective system for the teeth; it washes bacteria and food off the teeth, softens and neutralizes the effect of acids, provides sufficient supply of calcium and fluoride ions and reduces friction. Saliva also maintains the pH level and mineral balance in the oral cavity, therefore protecting teeth from caries. However, as saliva is exchanged during a kiss, so are the bacteria. If one of the kissers has bad teeth and poor oral hygiene, various harmful bacteria may be transmitted to the partner via saliva or blood, which may cause such infections.

As well as the more obvious respiratory viruses, influenza and the Epstein-Bar virus, experts from the American Academy of Periodontology believe that periodontal diseases can also be transmitted through saliva, which is why if one family member, or good friend is diagnosed with a periodontal disease, you should consult your dentist, too.

However, passionate kisses are good for oral health – saliva contains substances that help fight bacteria, viruses, and fungi and protect tooth enamel.

Do not let the potential threats keep you from kissing, but make certain that you maintain your oral health so you will not cause discomfort or health problems for the person you love.

Preventive Tips While Kissing (Both personal and teeth related!):

§  Use sugarfree chewing gum, preferably with xylitol

§  Maintain good oral hygiene.

§  Use mouthwash that contains Chlorhexidine.

§  Follow proper oral hygiene advice on a regular basis; visit your dentist if you suspect you may have caries or a periodontal disease.

§  Visit your dental hygienist twice a year!

§  Only kiss someone if you know where he or she has been


Please visit Sirowa Clinic for more information at


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