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Acta Odontol Scand. 1997 Jun;55(3):198-200.

The effect of zinc-containing chewing gum on volatile sulfur-containing compounds in the oral cavity.

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Dental Faculty, University of Oslo, Norway.


Volatile sulfur-containing compounds (VSC) are known to constitute the major component of halitosis. Aqueous solutions of zinc salts have been shown to reduce the levels of VSC produced orally. The aim of the present study was to examine whether zinc could be made available in the oral cavity and inhibit VSC production when delivered by a chewing gum. VSC measurements were carried out on the 'morning breath' of 11 test subjects and re-examined after the use of test solutions containing 0.02% zinc chloride, 0.2% chlorhexidine, or water or the use of chewing gums containing 2 mg, 0.5 mg, or 0 mg zinc acetate. The results showed that similar amounts of zinc in mouthrinses or chewing gum had the same effect, with a reduction of the oral VSC of 45%. Chewing gum thus seems to be a viable alternative for delivering zinc to reduce VSC levels in the oral cavity.

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