Triclosan/copolymer toothpastes beneficial for oral health

Clinical question: 
How effective are triclosan/copolymer-containing fluoride toothpastes, compared with fluoride toothpastes, for the long-term control of caries, plaque and gingivitis in children and adults?
Bottom line: 
Compared with fluoride toothpastes, triclosan/copolymer-containing fluoride toothpastes produced a 22% reduction in plaque, a 22% reduction in gingivitis, a 48% reduction in bleeding gums and a 5% reduction in tooth decay. There was insufficient evidence to show a difference between either toothpaste in preventing periodontitis. There was no evidence of any harmful effects associated with the use of triclosan/copolymer toothpastes in studies up to 3 years in length.
Caveat: 
The evidence relating to plaque and gingivitis was considered to be of moderate quality. The evidence on tooth decay was high quality, while the evidence on periodontitis was low quality. The toothpaste used in most of the studies was manufactured by Colgate.
Context: 
Periodontal disease and dental caries are highly prevalent oral diseases that can lead to pain and discomfort, oral hygiene and aesthetic problems, and eventually tooth loss. Triclosan is an antibacterial agent with low toxicity, which, along with a copolymer for aiding retention, can be added to toothpastes to reduce plaque and gingivitis.
Review CD#: 
CD010514
PEARLS No: 
440
Date: 
July, 2014
Authored by: 
Brian R McAvoy