With the current political climate, people who work in oral health care have a hard time finding work, said Dr. Scott A. Schaffer, a professor of oral health and oral medicine at George Washington University.
But a growing number of oral hygiene products have come on the market.
A recent survey by the Institute for Human Lifestyle, which is affiliated with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, found that the number of people working in oral care increased by 4 percent over the past year.
“In the past decade, there’s been a great rise in the demand for oral health products,” Schaffer said.
One of the main products is an oral hygiene gel, which can help to keep germs at bay.
“There’s a lot of good science behind it,” said Dr.-Ing.
Joseph A. Haggard, the chief of oral surgery at the University of California, Los Angeles.
Hoggard, who has worked in oral hygiene for 30 years, said that it was a long time coming.
“The technology hasn’t really caught up to what people need, and it’s been difficult to get people to use it,” he said.
In the past two decades, the FDA approved more than 10,000 products to treat oral infections.
One that caught the eye of Schaffer was the nasal spray.
The product uses the mucus that the mucous membranes produce to deliver a substance called NAL-100, a molecule that is designed to kill pathogens in the mouth and throat.
But it’s not used on an industrial scale, according to Schaffer.
“It’s really, really good in that it kills bacteria, but the problem is it can’t kill all of them,” he added.
“So there’s still a lot to do.”
The problem is that some products have been available for only a few years.
For instance, an oral health gel marketed by Sanofi Pasteur last year had only been approved for use on a small scale, but was available for purchase as of July 2017.
That’s when the FDA issued an alert that the product may be unsafe to use for oral hygiene purposes.
The FDA also noted that the gel was not designed to be used on the mouth itself.
And there are still some products on the shelf that may not meet the FDA’s standards.
“We don’t have a lot in terms of the quality of products, or the quality control,” said Schaffer of oral care products.
“But it’s an emerging field that’s going to be important for the future.”
In addition to oral hygiene, Schaffer also said that people are being exposed to germs through the air.
“Airborne germs are very common,” he explained.
“They’re very common because they’re in the air, and people are exposed to them from their work environment.”
He added that oral hygiene product companies are working to make air fresheners more efficient and make them less toxic.
For some of the more popular products, like those made by OralHealth, it may take a year or more for a product to reach the market, according.
For other products, Schacher said, it could take up to six months for a consumer to be able to buy a product.
“When you’re in a workforce, you’re always on the lookout for quality and effectiveness,” he advised.