Xylitol-Containing Products Can Help Fight Tooth Decay

In September 2011, a panel of experts coordinated by the American Dental Association Council on Scientific Affairs reported that candies, gums and lozenges containing xylitol may help prevent cavities. Xylitol, a sugar alcohol used as a sweetener, could be a valuable addition to regimens currently recommended for fighting tooth decay. Modern programs presently focus mostly on fluoride-based products.

In the report issued by the panel, these fluoride-free choices could be especially effective for patients prone to tooth decay as part of a wider oral health regimen that includes fluoride-containing dental varnishes and sealants, toothpaste, fluoridated public water supplies and a healthy diet. Xylitol, mannitol and sorbitol are in the group of low-calorie sweeteners known as polyols, and oral bacteria cannot feed on them. The panel also mentioned that candies containing xylitol may work best when used by children immediately after eating.

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by Creekside Dental

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