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CariFree treatment rinseIf your dentist has indicated you have high levels of cavity causing bacteria, they’ve likely recommended you use the CariFree CTx4 Treatment Rinse as part of your homecare regimen.  Here are some frequently asked questions about the Treatment Rinse…


Why does it taste like pool water?

The antimicrobial agent used in the CTx4 Treatment Rinse is sodium hypochlorite (NaOCl).  Sodium hypochlorite is more commonly known as the germ killing ingredient used in bleach.  Allow me to explain.  The sodium hypochlorite we are using is different from what you use to whiten your whites and disinfect your toilet.  Household bleach is 6% sodium hypochlorite and 94% other stuff.  We are using a pharmaceutical grade sodium hypochlorite at a 0.02% concentration.  That is a ratio of 1 part NaOCl to 5,000 parts water.

Why do we use sodium hypochlorite?

If you’re looking for the short answer, because it works!

Need more explanation?  Sodium hypochlorite is broad spectrum.  This means it destroys ALL of the bacteria in your mouth.  Other antimicrobial agents used in dentistry are not broad spectrum and therefore do not affect all of the bacteria, and in some cases, can cause some cavity causing bacteria to grow more.  In a 2007 study, the Treatment Rinse was shown to reduce caries incidence by 73%.

But isn’t some bacteria good?

Yes!  There is good bacteria and bad bacteria in your mouth.  It makes a really complex community of bacteria known as biofilm.  Because there are so many types of bad bacteria (50 and counting), it’s impossible to just affect those without destroying the good bacteria too.  With the Treatment Rinse we wipe everything out, start with a clean slate, and then create an environment where the healthy bacteria will thrive by raising the pH.

How long do I have to use this rinse?

Although the FDA considers sodium hypochlorite safe for daily use, the Treatment Rinse is not intended to be a forever treatment.  Your dentist will reevaluate you periodically to let you know when you can switch to a different rinse.  For most patients, this occurs after 6 to 9 months of treatment, although this varies greatly from patient to patient based on risk factors and the current state of disease.

Have more questions?  Ask!


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