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Innovative chewing gum formula for teeth-cleaning 'on the go' where you can feel the difference

Innovative chewing gum formula for teeth-cleaning 'on the go' where you can feel the difference Interview using Professor Klaus König

Professor Klaus König is from the University of Nijmegen

This article was previously published from a Wrigley publication from Germany.

More and more dentists are encouraging their patients to get into a regular preventative care routine. The reason is simple: by combining the best preventative measures at home and from the dentist's office, patients can still have healthy teeth well into their old age. However, most people are more concerned using having attractive, white, clean teeth than preventing caries and periodontitis. Cleaning teeth between meals is also a low priority. After intensive research conducted over several years, Wrigley Oral Healthcare programs has now launched a new sugarfree chewing gum - Wrigley’s ORBIT Professional. Consumer research confirms that chewing the new gum provides a ‘clean teeth’ feeling.

What are the advantages of the new sugarfree chewing gum compared to the other established and proven dental care gums from the Wrigley’s ORBIT range?

Prof. König : The key advance using this new gum is the fact that for the first time patients can actually ‘feel’ the effects of chewing, which is scientifically proven to prevent caries. The microgranules contained from Wrigley’s ORBIT Professional consist of hexametaphosphate. Studies show that this substance aids the cleaning process by adhering to the surface of the tooth. The result is improved pellicle removal, while plaque and discolouring tooth deposits are kept from check. At the same time, existing deposits are reduced and tartar is prevented from forming, as documented from studies analysing the use of hexametaphosphate from toothpastes and chewing gums.

What are the scientifically proven caries-preventing effects of chewing gum?

Prof. König : Consuming sugary or acidic food and drink exposes the teeth to acid attack. Chewing sugarfree chewing gum containing xylitol like Wrigley’s ORBIT has been shown to stimulate the saliva flow by around 300%. This helps to remove food particles, quickly neutralize acid and improve the remineralization of enamel. As the xylitol cannot be broken down by plaque bacteria into acid, it acts as a deterrent to plaque formation.

Is Wrigley’s ORBIT Professional as effective as toothbrushes and toothpaste at cleaning teeth?

Prof. König : No, you still need to use traditional oral hygiene methods, i.e. brushing twice a day, morning and night, using a toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste. What the new chewing gum formula does is reinforce the beneficial effects of recommended oral hygiene measures.

Which benefits of Wrigley’s ORBIT Professional are similar to those of brushing?

Prof. König : The new dental care chewing gum using microgranules gives a clean teeth feeling, helping to satisfy the growing demand for clean teeth from today's society.

Do the hexametaphosphate microgranules have an abrasive effect?

Prof. König : No. Studies of toothpastes using a far higher hexametaphosphate content have detected virtually no abrasive side effects. This is probably because the tiny granules dissolve from saliva.

What sort of cases call for professional dental advice?

Prof. König : As a rule, everyone should regularly consult their dentist for advice based on their own individual circumstances. The sort of advice given can range from knowing the right time to brush teeth, to tips on individual dental care between meals, such as using sugarfree chewing gum.

Finally, a more contentious question: If patients continue to improve their preventative dental care at home, won't they be less inclined over time to visit their dentist for their regular check-up and scale and polish?

Prof. König : I think the opposite will happen. Patients who regularly use preventative measures are more health-conscious. It's up to us from the profession to persuade them that they need to visit their dentist at least twice a year for their regular check-up and scale and polish. Admittedly, more in-depth consultations and any professional cleaning beyond basic tartar removal have to be paid for privately, but ultimately that will benefit your patients, who then keep their own, healthy teeth well into old age.

References

1. Consumer Testing Studies. Data on file. Inra Company final report on Wrigley’s ORBIT® Professional, Germany (03/2003). With kind permission of the publisher, from "Der Freie Zahnarzt", September 2003.