Omega-3 fatty acids as an adjunct for periodontal therapy-a review

Clin Oral Investig. 2016 Jun;20(5):879-94. doi: 10.1007/s00784-016-1750-2. Epub 2016 Feb 17.


Objectives: The aim of this article is to present an overview of omega-3 fatty acids, their anti-inflammatory properties and potential use as an adjunct for periodontal therapy.

Materials and methods: A general literature search was conducted to provide an overview of omega-3 fatty acids, their metabolism and anti-inflammatory properties. A more specific literature search of PubMed and EMBASE was conducted to identify articles dealing studies investigating the effects of omega-3 fatty acids in the treatment of periodontitis in animals and humans and included cross-sectional, longitudinal and intervention designs.

Results: To date, there is good emerging evidence that dietary supplementation with fish oil may be of some benefit and this is enhanced if combined with aspirin. All clinical intervention studies to date have been on small sample sizes, and this indicates there is need for larger and more robust clinical trials to verify these initial findings.

Conclusions: Dietary supplementation with fish oil could be a cost-effective adjunctive therapy to the management of periodontal disease.

Clinical relevance: The host modulatory properties of omega-3 fatty acids warrant further assessment of their use as an adjunct in the management of periodontitis.

Keywords: Host response; Omega-3 fatty acids; Periodontitis.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / therapeutic use
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Dietary Supplements
  • Fatty Acids, Omega-3 / therapeutic use*
  • Humans
  • Periodontitis / drug therapy*


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents
  • Fatty Acids, Omega-3