Who doesn't want minty fresh breath, after all nothing says "kiss me" quite like good oral hygiene. But, before you pucker up those lips you'll have to decide which mouthwash to use, Listerine or Scope.
Listerine, was actually first developed as an antiseptic for surgery, over a hundred years ago, mid 1860's, and never really intended for use as a mouthwash. It would take 30 years before, this amber colored, antiseptic became known as a useful tool to battle bacteria in the mouth. Over the next 20 years Listerine had made a name for itself inside dental offices, leading to its 1914 release as an over the counter drug, while simultaneously creating the "mouthwash" category. Since then Listerine has gone on to receive ADA, American Dental Association, approval as an effective way to combat plaque and gingivitis. On the downside Listerine leaves a harsh burning sensation in your mouth while gargling, because of the alcohol in Listerine, the sensation is comparable to gargling a shot of hard whiskey. Thankfully Listerine has gone through made the effort to provide a more enjoyable mouthwash while not sacrificing germ killing power. In 2003 Listerine introduce a Citrus flavored mouthwash and then in 2006 a Vanilla Mint mouthwash to go along with its popular Mint Listerine. The flavors helped to cut back on the burning sensation, however, it is still a noticeable trait of Listerine. After all "no pain no gain." Listerine has also developed mouthwash to promote whitening and their newest product, Agent Cool Blue. This newest Listerine product isn't an antiseptic rather than a plaque detector. A quick gargle of Agent Cool Blue will dye any plaque on your teeth blue. Undoubtedly aimed towards the child market.
As an interesting side note Listerine founders have been credited with coining the word "halitosis" which is derived from Latin, to mean bad breath.
Compared to Listerine, Scope could be considered the new baby on the block, dating back to 1966. Scope appeals to those looking for an alternative to the harsh conditions of Listerine. The more subdued Scope comes in 4 different flavors, mint, citrus, cinnamon, and peppermint. Scope claims to have same germ killing advantages of Listerine, with out the Listerine burn.
Before taking to easy way out and choosing Scope over Listerine consider this. Unlike Scope, Listerine has the ADA's approval, meaning it is a trusted product that delivers what it promises, to kill bad breath germs, plaque, and the gum disease gingivitis. Scope contains glycerin which can deprive your mouth of saliva, a natural antiseptic for killing germs in your mouth. Additionally the main ingredient in Scope may be not as effective as thought. Cetylpyridinium chloride, the main ingredient, may not be as effective when mixed with saliva in the mouth or combined with other oral health products.
Listerine has been my choice of mouth was for years now, not just because of its brand name, but the product behind the name. Over a 100 years as a trusted name in oral care and an ADA approval makes Listerine a sure bet that you're getting a quality product.