Use of chlorhexidine chewing gum significantly reduces dental plaque formation compared to use of similar xylitol and sorbitol products

Georg Tellefsen, Greg Larsen, Ravi Kaligithi, Grenith J. Zimmerman, Ulf M E Wikesjö

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

17 Scopus citations


A DOUBLE-BLIND 3-TREATMENT CROSSOVER design employing a 6-day trial period without mechanical oral hygiene measures was used to compare dental plaque formation following use of chiorhexidine (CHX) acetate-, xylitol-, and sorbitol-containing chewing gum. Fourteen dental students were assigned a random ordering of use of the chewing gum products and received professional tooth cleaning at the start of trial periods. For each trial period, subjects were instructed to use 5 pieces of the unlabeled chewing gum daily (containing 5.0 mg CHX acetate/piece; 0.8 g xylitol/piece; or 1.0 g sorbitol/piece). Two pieces of chewing gum were used following each morning and evening meal and one piece following the noon meal. The subjects were instructed to use the products for 20 minutes at each occasion. A 7-day washout-period between trial periods was used. The Turesky modification of the Quigley and Hein index was used to assess plaque formation. Differences between treatments were evaluated using a repeated measures ANOVA with Newman-Keuls multiple comparisons. The CHX-containing chewing gum showed significantly reduced plaque values (0.7 ± 0.4) compared to the sorbitol- (2.7 ± 0.4; P < 0.01) and xylitol-product (1.7 ± 0.3; P < 0.01). Furthermore, the CHX-product significantly reduced plaque levels compared to the study subjects' regular plaque control routines (1.3 ± 0.4; P < 0.05). The xylitol-product exhibited significantly lower plaque-values than the sorbitol-product (P < 0.01). Our results suggest that regular use of CHX-containing chewing gum appears useful to control dental plaque formation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)181-183
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of Periodontology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jan 1 1996



  • Chewing gum
  • Chlorhexidine/therapeutic use
  • Comparative study
  • Dental plaque/prevention and control
  • Double blind method
  • Sorbitol/therapeutic use
  • Xylitol/therapeutic use

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Periodontics

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