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October 25, 1930


JAMA. 1930;95(17):1267-1268. doi:10.1001/jama.1930.02720170049012

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The early part of the twentieth century may be interesting historically for the fact that it witnessed the apotheosis of the tooth brush, the tooth paste and the mouth wash. It started with the slogan "A Clean Tooth Never Decays," subsequently proved to be as false as many other slogans through which high pressure advertising agencies attract the shekels of the paying public. When the competition for maximum sales in tooth brushes was at its height, special claims were made for peculiar curves of the handle, unequal pieces of the tufting, hardness and softness of the bristles and a half dozen other alleged refinements that are less matters of scientific value than choice or taste.

So far as mouth washes are concerned, their virtues may lie in a slight astringency or alkalinity, in the mildly antiseptic influence they exert for the extremely brief period in which they are in contact

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