Testing the effectiveness of Alcohol and Alcohol- free Mouthwash against Bacteria
Large numbers of these products claim to do the same thing: kill bacteria. It is worth considering what these products actually do, compared to the claims about them.
Although many of these products promise that they present with a final 0% bacteria environment and fresh breath, the accuracy of this statement is highly dependent on the ingredients present within the solution.
Alcohol is a highly common ingredient in most mouthwashes because of its strong bacteria fighting effects. It has been used for many years by leading oral health care brands. Although this is a positive effect of alcohol in mouthwashes, many mouthwashes containing alcohol have been proven to have caused other health care problems such as dry mouth, etc. So, although alcoholic mouthwash kills much of the bacteria, it does not have an effect on the end result of the continuous problem of bad breath. Hence, mouthwashes that are alcohol free but contain another bacteria killing agent are more effective.
Recent studies completed by Maria Perno Goldie, RDH, MS showing that “products containing alcohol like Listerine wound up reducing bacteria in patients by between 13 percent and 56 percent, whilst Non-alcoholic rinses, such as Colgate Pro-Health, had a 15 percent effect on bacteria.” (Goldie, 2013)
For this experiment, a range of mouthwashes were used to test whether alcohol-based mouthwashes are more effective than non-alcohol-based mouthwashes. Products tested included two leading brands most commonly found and used within the everyday household, Listerine and Colgate. From these two brands a selection of four mouthwashes were chosen- Two alcohol fre...
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The final mouthwash tested Listerine Zero, proved to be the least effective, with an average of 3.47058824mm for S.albus and an average of 2.47647059 mm of E.coli. Containing no alcohol, this is the least effective.
The results from the raw data in Figure Two were then calculated into four averages and then presented in a Graph Figure Three.
Figure Three – Calculated averages of results recorded.
From Figure Three, it is clearly evident that Colgate Plax provided the best results and was the most effective against both E.coli and S.albus. Listerine Fresh Burst was the second most effective against S.albus and third best for E.coli. . Colgate Max White One was the third most effective for S.albus and second best for E.coli and Listerine Zero was the least effective for both S.albus and E.coli
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