Hey everyone! My name is Streptococcus mutans, and welcome to my crib!
Streptococcus mutans is kind of a mouthful, so you can just call me S. mutans for short. I like to spend my days hanging out in the oral cavities (mouth) of most people and boy is it a good time! I am a big contributor to the decaying of teeth, which usually affects and impacts a persons overall oral health.
The way I cause tooth decay is simple really. I am a cariogenic microorganism, so I breakdown sugar and use it for energy as well as producing an acidic environment. Because of that I demineralize the typical structure of a humans mouth and more importantly the structure of their teeth.
I'm a bit of an opportunistic organism. I'm not a huge fan of the coating on a person's tooth and if someone isn't taking proper care of their teeth with routein oral hygeine I can make that coating disappear, just like magic. This causes holes to form, which is the perfect spot for me to chill in and have some “me time”.
1) Streptococcus mutans- Tooth Decay - MicrobeWiki. (n.d.). Retrieved November 28, 2016, from https://microbewiki.kenyon.edu/index.php/Streptococcus_mutans-_Tooth_Decay#Signs_and_Symptoms
7) Bassett, A. (n.d.). Streptococcus mutans. Retrieved November 28, 2016, from http://web.mst.edu/~microbio/BIO221_2006/S_mutans.htm