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New study says toothpastes need more than just fluoride
Updated: 5/18/2010 3:00:29 PM

New study says toothpastes need more than just fluoride Daily brushing can be one of the most effective ways for individuals to avoid dental health problems, but simply using standard toothpaste may not provide the best results, according to a new study.

Researchers looked at the effect of toothpastes containing triclosan copolymer and found that they were better at killing more of the harmful bacteria that exists in the cavities of mouths.

The warm, moist atmosphere of the mouth is ideal for bacteria. Most of the bacteria common the mouths are harmless, but some can lead to bad breath, gum disease and tooth decay.

Lead researcher, Joseph Zambon, of the University of Buffalo, said that fluoride is known to kill some of these bacteria, but that triclosan copolymer is more effective at preventing certain strains from infecting the mouth.

"Repetitive testing shows that toothpaste with triclosan copolymer outperformed the fluoride-only toothpastes when it came to inhibiting the growth of bacteria," he said. "Triclosan added to toothpaste has been shown in a number of clinical studies to inhibit plaque and gingivitis."

Toothpastes with this added bacteria-fighting compound are commercially available from many companies.

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