Antibacterial activity of baking soda

Compend Contin Educ Dent Suppl. 1997;18(21):S17-21;quiz S46.


The antibacterial activity of baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) was assessed using three different experimental approaches. Standard minimum inhibitory concentration analyses revealed substantial inhibitory activity against Streptococcus mutans that was not due to ionic strength or high osmolarity. Short-term exposure assays showed significant killing of bacterial suspensions when baking soda was combined with the detergent sodium dodecylsulfate. Multiple, brief exposures of sucrose-colonized S mutans to baking soda and sodium dodecylsulfate caused statistically significant decreases in numbers of viable cells. Use of oral health care products with high concentrations of baking soda could conceivably result in decreased levels of cariogenic S mutans in saliva and plaque.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / pharmacology*
  • Drug Combinations
  • Drug Synergism
  • Microbial Sensitivity Tests
  • Sodium Bicarbonate / pharmacology*
  • Sodium Dodecyl Sulfate / pharmacology
  • Streptococcus mutans / drug effects*
  • Streptococcus mutans / metabolism
  • Sucrose / metabolism


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Drug Combinations
  • Sodium Dodecyl Sulfate
  • Sucrose
  • Sodium Bicarbonate