This clinical study evaluated the effect of rinsing with an essential oil-containing antiseptic mouthrinse, with or without 100 mg/kg fluoride ion, on the plaque metabolic acid production and plaque pH response after a sucrose challenge. This observer-blind, randomized study used a three-way crossover design. Twenty-four subjects rinsed with 20 ml of one of the following rinses: (1) essential oil (EO) mouthrinse, (2) essential oil mouthrinse plus 100 mg/kg fluoride, or (3) negative control, for 30 s, twice daily for 16 days. On day 17, 1 h after the last mouthrinse, subjects rinsed with 20 ml of mass fraction 10% sucrose solution for 1 min. Seven minutes after the sucrose challenge, supragingival plaque was collected from molar and premolar teeth. Plaque pH and metabolic acid ions were analyzed using a micro pH electrode and capillary electrophoresis, respectively. The results showed that after EO mouthrinse dental plaque produced 36% less lactate, 36% less acetate and 44% less propionate than after the negative control rinse. The dental plaque also exhibited a pH 0.42 unit higher after EO rinse than after the negative control rinse. These results were not affected by the addition of 100 mg/kg fluoride to the EO mouthrinse. From these results we concluded that this EO antiseptic mouthrinse, with or without fluoride ion, is effective in reduction of plaque acidogenicity after a sucrose challenge.

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