A new study has shown that over-the-counter mouthwash might help kill off COVID-19.
Per the Independent, researchers at Cardiff University discovered that mouthwashes can destroy the virus in a labratory within 30 seconds. And while the mouthwash may help kill the virus in saliva samples, it hasn’t proven to be a treatment for coronavirus, since it can’t get to the respiratory tract or lungs.
As new of the study made the rounds, the New York Times cautioned against relying on using mouth wash as a measure against COVID-19.
“If these positive results are reflected in Cardiff University's clinical trial, CPC-based mouthwashes... could become an important addition to people's routine, together with hand washing, physical distancing and wearing masks, both now and in the future," Dr. Nick Claydon, a specialist periodontologist, told the BBC.
The university report says that mouthwashes with at least 0.07% cetypyridinium chloride (CPC) revealed “promising signs” of eliminating the virus in the lab. The report hasn’t yet been peer-reviewed, but it reinforces another recent study that said CPC-based mouthwashes are efficient in lowering viral load.
“This study adds to the emerging literature that several commonly-available mouthwashes designed to fight gum disease can also inactivate the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus (and other related coronaviruses) when tested in the laboratory under conditions that are designed to mimic the oral/nasal cavity in a test tube," Dr. Richard Stanton, lead author on the study, told BBC.
Stanton said that the study is "not yet peer-reviewed and published," which means it still as to be "scrutinized" by other scientists;
“People should continue to follow the preventive measures issued by the UK government, including washing hands frequently and maintaining social distance,” he added.
An upcoming clinical trial will show if mouthwash helps diminish levels of the virus in the saliva of virus patients at the University Hospital of Wales, with research anticipated to be completed early next year. While the results are promising, the clinical trial will not generate evidence on how to stop the passing of the virus between patients.