Effects of xylitol wipes on cariogenic bacteria and caries in young children

J Dent Res. 2012 Jul;91(7 Suppl):85S-90S. doi: 10.1177/0022034511434354.


The aim of the study was to investigate the efficacy of the use of xylitol-containing tooth-wipes in preventing dental caries in young children. In a double-blinded randomized controlled clinical trial, 44 mothers with active caries and their 6- to 35-month-old children were randomized to xylitol-wipe or placebo-wipe groups. The children's caries scores were recorded at baseline and 1 year. Salivary levels of mutans streptococci and lactobacilli were enumerated at baseline, 3, 6, and 12 months. Data were analyzed by intent-to-treat modeling with imputation for caries lesions and a linear mixed-effect model for bacterial levels. Significantly fewer children in the xylitol-wipe group had new caries lesions at 1 year compared with those in the placebo-wipe group (P < 0.05). No significant differences between the two groups were observed in levels of mutans streptococci and lactobacilli at all time-points. Daily xylitol-wipe application significantly reduced the caries incidence in young children as compared with wipes without xylitol, suggesting that the use of xylitol wipes may be a useful adjunct for caries control in infants (Clinicaltrials.gov registration number CT01468727).

Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT01468727.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Bacterial Load / drug effects
  • Cariostatic Agents / administration & dosage
  • Cariostatic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Child, Preschool
  • DMF Index
  • Dental Caries / microbiology*
  • Dental Caries / prevention & control
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Lactobacillus / drug effects*
  • Male
  • Oral Hygiene
  • Placebos
  • Saliva / microbiology
  • Streptococcus mutans / drug effects*
  • Sweetening Agents / administration & dosage
  • Sweetening Agents / therapeutic use
  • Xylitol / administration & dosage
  • Xylitol / therapeutic use*


  • Cariostatic Agents
  • Placebos
  • Sweetening Agents
  • Xylitol

Associated data

  • ClinicalTrials.gov/NCT01468727