Background. The authors conducted a two-week clinical study to determine the remineralizing effect of an experimental mouthrinse containing both fluoride and essential oils in an intraoral caries test model. Methods. The study used an observer-blinded, randomized, controlled, 3 x 3 crossover design. The authors enrolled in the study 153 subjects, each of whom had a mandibular removable partial denture. Two partially demineralized human enamel specimens were mounted on each subject's removable partial denture. Subjects used either a fluoride mouthrinse with essential oils (the test mouthrinse), a fluoride nonessential oils mouthrinse (the positive control) or an essential oil nonfluoride mouthrinse (the negative control) twice daily for 14 days. The researchers assessed specimens for mineral content change and fluoride uptake using surface microhardness, or SMH, testing and enamel fluoride analysis, respectively. Results. Of the 153 subjects enrolled in the study, 125 subjects were evaluable at the study endpoint. The results after two weeks showed that percentage of SMH recovery was 42 percent in the test group, 36 percent in the positive control group and 16 percent in the negative control group. The fluoride uptake was 19 micrograms per square centimeter, 16 μg/cm2and 3 μg/cm2for the test mouthrinse, positive control and negative control groups, respectively. In terms of both percentage of SMH and fluoride uptake, the test mouthrinse and positive control mouthrinse were statistically higher than the negative control mouthrinse, and the test mouthrinse was "at least as good as" the positive control mouthrinse. Conclusions. This study provides evidence that an essential oil mouthrinse with 100 parts per million fluoride is effective in promoting enamel remineralization and fluoride uptake. Clinical Implications. The combination of fluoride and essential oils in a mouthrinse may provide anticaries efficacy, in addition to essential oils' previously established antigingivitis efficacy.
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