How To Use Miswak Stick
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How To Use Miswak Stick

26 june 190 195abr
ADV.BIORES.Vol 2 [1] JUNE 2011 {190} Society of Education, India

RESEARCH ARTICLE 0976-4089

In-vitro Screening of Some Selected Nigerian Medicinal Plants (Fagara zanthoxyloides, Vernonia amygdalina, Prosopis africana and Azadirachta indica) for Antibacterial activity

Osho, A1., Bello, O.O2., Fayemi, S.

O1.

and Adetunji, T.1Department of Biological Sciences, Redeemers University, Redemption City, Ogun State 2Department of Microbiology, Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ogun State.E-mail: adelekeosho@yahoo.om Phone Number: +234 8034714411

ABSTRACT Fagara zanthoxyloides, Vernonia amygdalina, Prosopis africana and Azadirachta indica are some of the medicinal plants used as chewing sticks in Africa..The antimicrobial activities of the extracts of these plants in the treatment of human oral diseases were investigated in five treatments.

These include the hot water extract, cold water extract, hot ethanol extract and essential oils.Clinical samples were collected from a dental clinic at Ijebu

Ode General Hospital, Ogun State.

These were swabbed and plated directly on McConkey agar, blood agar and chocolate agar.The organisms implicated were Streptococcus viridians, Staphylococcus albus, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Klebsiella pneumoniae and Proteus vulgaris.

It is concluded in this study that the various extracts of these plants have strong antimicrobial efficacies against human oral pathogens in varying degrees.The essential oils of these plants have proven to be most efficacious.

The active ingredient obtained from these plants could be modernized and used conveniently by both rural and urban communities for the treatment of oral infections.

KEYWORDS: Chewing sticks, extracts, caries, oral pathogens, tooth decay, hygiene.
INTRODUCTION Good oral hygiene is necessary for healthy teeth, gum and fresh breath.A number of methods are used in oral hygiene to prevent and cure oral diseases.It is pertinent to look at the role plants play in oral hygiene as a number of them have medicinal properties [1].In many African homes, teeth are cleaned in the morning by chewing the root or slim stem of certain plants until they acquire brush-like ends [2].

The Babylonians recorded the use of chewing sticks in 7000 BC and its use ultimately spread throughout the Greek and Roman Empires 3.It is also used by Egyptians, Jews and in the Islamic empires.

It is believed that the counterpart of the modern day toothbrush was unknown in Europe until about 300 years ago.Presently, chewing sticks are used in Africa, South America, the Middle East and Asia.

Chewing stick has different names depending on different societies.For instance, Miswak, Siwak or Arak is used in Middle East, Miswaki in Tanzania, Datan in India and Pakistan [3]
how to use miswak stick
.A number of plants are used as chewing sticks in West Africa these include: Neem (Azadirachta indica), Zanthoxylum zanthoxyloides waterman

(Fagara zanthoxyloides lam) root and Vernonia amygdalina

(Deli root).Others include

the lime tree

(Citrus aurantifolia) and the orange tree citrus

(Citrus sinensis) sometimes provides chewing sticks.

The roots of senna (Cassia vinnea) have been used by American Negroes and those of African Laburnum (Cassia sieberiana) and those of

Sierra Leone.Neem (Azadirachta indica) has also been

widely used as chewing sticks in the Indian sub-continent; these are just few of the plants used as chewing sticks [4].Chewing sticks impact varying taste sensations, a tingling, peppery taste and numbness is provided by Zanthoxylum zanthoxyloides waterman

(Fagara zanthoxyloides lam) root, a strong bitter taste and frothing from Masularia accuminata

(G.Don) Bullox ex Hoyle stem and initial bitterness becoming sweet later from Vernonia amygdalina

(Deli root).The most popular chewing sticks are ones having good flavour and texture and a recognized effect on teeth and supporting tissues.Freshly cut ADVANCES IN BIORESEARCH, Vol 2 [1] JUNE 2011: 190 - 195 ADV.BIORES.Vol 2 [1] JUNE 2011 {191}specimens are always desirable because they are more easily chewed into a brush.Some of them possess such tough fibers that penetrate the gum during use thus causing some discomfort [5].In recent years, multiple drug/chemical resistance in both human and plant pathogenic microorganisms have been developed due to the indiscriminate use of commercial antibacterial drugs/chemical commonly used in the treatment of infectious diseases [6].This situation forced scientists to the search for new antibacterial substance from various sources like medicinal plants [7].

For years, Man has used various parts of plants in the treatment and prevention of various ailments [8].Plant based natural constituents can be derived from barks leaves, flowers, roots, fruits, seeds of plants [9] which in most cases contain active components

10.

Since the use of certain plants as traditional chewing sticks has been neglected and, which could be attributed to the failure of researchers to establish concrete facts as regards the antimicrobial efficacies of these plants to combat dental diseases, it becomes necessary to investigate which plants could be recommended for this purpose.This study presents Fagara zanthoxyloides, Azadirachta indica, Vernonia amygdalina and Prosopis africana with their chemotherapeutic properties in order to establish their antimicrobial efficacies against human oral pathogens.
MATERIALS AND METHODS The experiment involved four types of chewing sticks; five categories of extracts and 32 isolates obtained directly from infected teeth.Collection of plants: Azadarachta indica (Dongoyaro), Fagara zanthoxyloides (Orin ata), Proposis Africana

(Pako ayan) and Vernonia amygdalina

(Ewuro) barks were collected from cultivated sources in Ago-Iwoye and Ijebu-Igbo communities, South-West
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