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Meta-analysis of the Effect of an Essential Oil-containing Mouthrinse on Gingivitis and Plaque1
- Araujo M, Charles C, Weinstein R, Parikh-Das AM, Zhang J, Gunsolley JC. Meta-analysis of the effect of an essential oil-containing mouthrinse on gingivitis and plaque. J Am Dent Assoc. 2015;146(8):610-622.
Essential Oil Mouthwash Effect on Gingivitis and Plaque
Compare the efficacy of combined mechanical oral hygiene and use of essential oil-containing mouthrinses (MMEO) with that of a negative control of mechanical method only of oral hygiene (MM) based on the percentage of healthy gingival sites identified at 6 months.
Meta-analysis evaluated data from 29 long-term, randomized, placebo-controlled, observer-blind, parallel-group clinical trials of ≥6 months’ duration investigating antigingivitis and antiplaque effects of essential oil (EO)-containing mouthrinses.
- >5,000 healthy subjects with mild-to-moderate gingival inflammation and dental plaque
- Trials conducted across 3 countries from 1980 to 2012
- Evaluation included individual, site-specific data measured from >500,000 tooth sites
Essential Oil Mouthwash Efficacy results
MMEO patients had significantly higher odds of having a cleaner, healthier mouth. Based on odds ratios‡ calculated from this meta-analysis:
- MMEO patients achieved a greater than 7x higher odds for “plaque-free” sites when compared with MM patients
- MMEO patients also achieved 5x higher odds for “healthy” sites when compared with MM patients
A greater percentage of subjects achieved “plaque-free” sites with MMEO vs MM.
Percentage of responders with 50% “plaque-free” sites:
- At 3 months—MMEO 21% vs MM 4%
- At 6 months—MMEO 37% vs MM 5.5%
A greater percentage of subjects achieved “healthy” sites with MMEO vs MM.
Percentage of responders with 50% “healthy” sites:
- At 3 months—MMEO 19.1% vs MM 10.3%
- At 6 months—MMEO 44.8% vs MM 14.4%
By determining the percentage of plaque-free tooth surfaces and gingival sites that achieved health—which are the goals of preventive services—these long-term clinical trials demonstrate the clinically relevant benefit of daily use of essential oil-containing mouthrinses for plaque and gingivitis reduction beyond mechanical method alone in oral hygiene.
Daily rinsing with an essential oil-containing mouthrinse as adjunctive use with a mechanical oral hygiene provided significantly higher odds of having a cleaner and healthier mouth, which may lead to prevention of disease progression.