Scientific innovation


Clinical Studies - Sharma

Clinical Studies – Sharma

Adjunctive benefit of an essential oil-containing mouthrinse in reducing plaque and gingivitis in patients who brush and floss regularly: A six-month study2

- Sharma N, Charles CH, Lynch MC, et al. J Am Dent Assoc. 2004;135:496-504.


Determine the incremental benefit of the adjunctive use of an essential oil-containing antiseptic mouthrinse (LISTERINE COOL MINT®) to routine brushing and flossing in inhibiting whole-mouth plaque and gingivitis (N=237).


Randomized, controlled, observer-blind, parallel-group clinical study of subjects with mild-to-moderate gingivitis.

Site-Wise Analysis

Subjects were randomized to one of three groups:

  • Brushing + Hydroalcohol (5%) Rinse
  • Brushing + Flossing + Hydroalcohol (5%) Rinse
  • Brushing + Flossing + LISTERINE® Antiseptic

Following a complete prophylaxis on Day 1, subjects were instructed to:

  • Rinse with 20 mL of their assigned rinse for 30 seconds 2x daily
  • 6 month period
  • Brush 2x daily + Floss 1x day (day the two groups that included floss)

Plaque, gingivitis, and bleeding assessments were conducted at:

  • Baseline
  • Month 3
  • Month 6


Whole-mouth mean Plaque Index score at 6 months: BFEO rinse group experienced 52% reduction versus BFC.

Whole-mouth mean Modified Gingival Index score at 6 months: BFEO rinse group experienced 21% reduction versus BFC.

Data from Sharma study

B = Brushing
F = Flossing
C = Rinsing with control mouthrinse
EO = Rinsing with an essential oil mouthrinse


This long-term study demonstrates that the adjunctive use of an essential oils-containing mouthrinse twice daily provides a meaningful and clinically significant incremental benefit to a recommended regimen of brushing twice daily and flossing once daily.