Does mouthwash kill coronavirus? All you need to know after Dentyl study

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A new scientific study has shown that mouthwash can eradicate coronavirus within 30 seconds of being exposed to it in a laboratory.

The Cardiff University report said that preliminary results show mouthwashes containing at least 0.07 per cent cetypyridinium chloride (CPC) showed “promising signs” of being able to combat the virus.

Scientists must now look at whether mouthwashes have the potential to work in people, with a new clinical trial set to look at whether using over-the-counter mouthwash has the potential to reduce the levels of Covid-19 in a patient’s saliva.

Here is everything you need to know about research into mouthwash and coronavirus.

Coronavirus spreads primarily through droplets generated when an infected person coughs, sneezes or speaks (Reuters)REUTERS
Coronavirus spreads primarily through droplets generated when an infected person coughs, sneezes or speaks (Reuters)REUTERS

Does mouthwash kill coronavirus?

The latest study has shown that some mouthwashes show “promising signs” of being able to combat coronavirus, although it has only been looked at in a laboratory setting.

The Cardiff University report, entitled Virucidal Efficacy of Oral Rinse Components Against SARS-CoV-2 In Vitro, is also yet to be peer reviewed.

But it supports another study published last week that found CPC-based mouthwashes are effective in reducing Covid’s viral load.

The latest test was also carried out by scientists at the university’s laboratory and mimicked the conditions of a person’s naso/oropharynx passage using mouthwash brands including Dentyl.

<p>The latest test was carried out by scientists at Cardiff University’s laboratory </p> (AFP via Getty Images)

The latest test was carried out by scientists at Cardiff University’s laboratory

(AFP via Getty Images)

What happens next?

The next stage of research, a 12-week clinical trial, will examine how effective mouthwash is in reducing the viral load in the saliva of Covid-19 patients, which will be key in the research.

The study will take place at the University Hospital of Wales in Cardiff and its results will published in the first part of 2021.

Dentyl is the only UK mouthwash brand to take part in the clinical trial, which is led by Professor David Thomas from Cardiff University and titled: “The measurement of mouthwash anti-viral activity against Covid-19”.

Should I add mouthwash into my daily routine?

Although the study is seen as significant, much more research needs to be carried out to understand whether mouthwash has the potential to reduce the levels of Covid-19 in a patient’s saliva.

Understanding how mouthwash would affect viral transmission between patients would also requite a different type of study on a much larger scale, experts say.

Professor David Thomas said: “Whilst these mouthwashes very effectively eradicate the virus in the laboratory, we need to see if they work in patients and this is the point of our ongoing clinical study."

He added: “It is important to point out the study won’t give us any direct evidence on viral transmission between patients, that would require a different type of study on a much larger scale.

“The ongoing clinical study will, however, show us how long any effects last, following a single administration of the mouthwash in patients with Covid-19.”

Dr Nick Claydon, a specialist periodontologist, said he believed the research was “very valuable”.

He said: “If these positive results are reflected in Cardiff University’s clinical trial, CPC-based mouthwashes such as Dentyl used in the in-vitro study could become an important addition to people’s routine, together with hand washing, physical distancing and wearing masks, both now and in the future.”

According to the World Health Organisation has said there is no evidence to suggest gargling mouthwash helps protect against the coronavirus in any way.

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