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J Indian Soc Pedod Prev Dent. 2008 Jan;26 Suppl 1:S14-8.

The effect of povidone-iodine and chlorhexidine mouth rinses on plaque Streptococcus mutans count in 6- to 12-year-old school children: an in vivo study.

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Department of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry, R.V Dental College, Bangalore, Karnataka, India.



Treating a carious tooth in children with high caries experience by providing a restoration does not cure the disease. If the unfavorable oral environment that caused the cavity persists so will the disease and more restorations will be required in future. Treating the oral infection by reducing the number of cariogenic microorganisms and establishing a favorable oral environment to promote predominantly remineralization of tooth structure over time will stop the caries process. The present study was conducted: (1) To evaluate the efficacy of povidone-iodine and chlorhexidine mouth rinses on plaque Streptococcus mutans when used as an adjunct to restoration. (2) To compare the anti-microbial effect of 1% povidone-iodine and 0.2% chlorhexidine mouth rinses on plaque S. mutans count.


Forty-five study participants in the age group of 6-12 years with dmft (decay component) of three or four were selected from one government school in Bangalore city. They were divided into three groups after the restorative treatment. Group-A, Group-B, and Group-C received 1% povidone-iodine mouth rinse, 0.2% chlorhexidine mouth rinse and placebo mouth rinse, respectively, twice daily for 14 days. The plaque sample was collected and S. mutans count was estimated at six phases: (1) Baseline, (2) 3 weeks after restoration, (3) First day after mouth rinse therapy, (4) 15 days after mouth rinse therapy, (5) 1 month and (6) 3 months after mouth rinse therapy


After the restoration the percentage change in S. mutans count was 28.4%. Immediately after mouth rinse therapy there was significant reduction in S. mutans count in all the three groups. After which the count started to increase gradually and after 3 months the bacterial counts in the povidone-iodine group and placebo group were almost near the postrestorative count.


Mouth rinses can be used as adjunct to restoration for short duration as temporary measure in reduction of S. mutans count and restorations provide longer effect. In case a mouth rinse has to be used, chlorhexidine can be recommended as it has shown to have better effect than Povidone-iodine and placebo.

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