Dental caries is a widely prevalent infectious disease afflicting the humans worldwide. Each year oral infections such as dental caries, periodontal diseases and oral candidiasis significantly adds to the economic burden of the world. Though there are standard management techniques for these diseases; they do have side effects and are not cost effective. Ayurveda is a traditional Indian system of medicine that is being practiced in the Indian peninsula since ages. Among the various herbal medicines in ayurveda, triphala occupies a royal position due to its wide beneficial systemic actions. Triphala is a mixture of fruits of Terminalia bellirica, Terminalia chebula and Emblica officinalis. The antimicrobial actions of triphala are well documented in the literature. However availability of review articles regarding triphala as an antimicrobial against oral infections is limited. Need was felt to review this aspect of triphala. The present article reviews the use of triphala and its constituents in the prevention and control of dental caries and other common oral infections. Thorough review of the literature indicated that triphala can be effectively used to manage dental caries, gingival and periodontal diseases. Further it can also be utilized as a root canal irrigant and against oral candida species.
Keywords: Ayurveda, dental caries, dental plaque, gingivitis, oral candidiasis, oral infections, prevention, Streptococcus mutans, triphala.