The effects on plaque parameters of sugar free chewing-gums (CG) sweetened with either maltitol or xylitol were
assessed to better understand the role polyols can play in dental caries prevention.
parallel, randomised, controlled study was conducted in China. Subjects (N = 258, age = 13 to 15 years-old) were divided into 4 groups:
2 receiving polyols CG, containing respectively maltitol or xylitol, a group receiving gum base (placebo) and a negative control group not
receiving any gum. CG were chewed for 30 days. This corresponds to a 10 g consumption of polyol per day. Plaque parameters
(growth, pH, bacteria and insoluble glucans) were evaluated throughout the experimental period.
All parameters studied
were significantly modified with gum base compared to no-gum: plaque pH increased; plaque growth, bacteria (S. mutans, S. sobrinus,
A. viscosus and Lactobacillus) and insoluble glucans decreased. Maltitol and xylitol CG led similarly to a higher plaque pH (AUC,
p0.05) on short (at baseline after the first CG consumption) and long term (after 4 weeks of daily CG consumption), with or without
saliva stimulation compared to both control and placebo groups. They led to a decrease in plaque growth (p=0.02) over the
experimental period compared to controls. Moreover, they significantly reduced the concentration of 4 cariogenic bacteria species
(p0.05) in dental plaque compared to gum base.
Sugar free CG sweetened with either maltitol or xylitol can
similarly reduce plaque acidogenicity compared to gum base through a decrease in oral bacteria presence. The use of a gum base
placebo allowed to isolate effects on parameters involved in dental caries development specific to maltitol and xylitol, and to show these
effects were similar.
Vol.14 – n.4/2013
Harvard: C. Thabuis, C. Y. Cheng, X. Wang, M. Pochat, A. Han, L. Miller, D. Wils, L. Guerin-Deremaux (2013) "Effects of maltitol and xylitol chewing-gums on parameters involved in dental caries development", European Journal of Paediatric Dentistry, 14(4), pp303-308. doi:
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