by Dr. Harold Katz - Founder, California Breath Clinics
Since I started the California Breath Clinics in 1994, I have never recommended or endorsed any kind of breath mint. Simply put, there was nothing that I ever found that was truly a breath freshener.
All the "breath candies" that you're used to seeing in the stores (Altoids, Tic-Tacs, Certs, Ice Breakers, etc...) all commit some kind of fatal mistake in the documented science of creating fresh breath. You see, by now the academic halitosis community knows the causes of bad breath.... and we also know the exact conditions that create an oral environment in your mouth that is MORE LIKELY to produce bad breath. So wouldn't you think that a 'breath mint' should contain ingredients that make this oral environment less likely to happen? At the very least, there shouldn't be anything in there would make that oral environment WORSE, right? You can probably see what I'm getting at.... the top breath fresheners on the market ALL contain either sugar (which the bad breath bacteria absolutely feast on), or they contain an artificial flavor designed to cover-up rather than prevent bad breath and taste.
NONE OF THEM Contain Any Clinically Proven, Breath-Refreshing Ingredients.
ZOX mints are the first breath mint designed to remove bad breath instead of mask it.
Now first let me get one thing straight .... if you have chronic halitosis, then DON'T expect a breath mint to make the problem go away (although they are an excellent maintenance device if you are already using the TheraBreath system in the morning and night). My last 10 years have been spent helping people who mostly have had chronic halitosis problems - the type of condition that every time you talk with a person you detect an odor from their breath. But there is a type of bad breath out there that is common to everyone that I've been largely ignoring for the last 10 years! I refer to this type as situational bad breath. Situational Bad Breath occurs in 99.9% of the world population at one time or another (statistically just about everybody, but my lawyers make me say it like that!). It happens when someone activates a 'trigger' that causes the oral environment in their mouth to become more likely for the anaerobic bacteria to begin creating the volatile sulfur compounds (VSC's) that cause bad breath. In scientific terms, when your mouth encounters one of these triggers, it creates an oral environment that encourages the anaerobic bacteria to begin extracting sulfur compounds from specific amino acids. One amino acid (Cysteine) turns into Hydrogen Sulfide (the rotten-egg smell), and another amino acid (Methionine) becomes Methyl Mercaptan which smells sort of like dirty socks!
So Let's Take A Real-World Example For A Minute...
You get together with some friends one weekend for bite to eat at a delectable restaurant that serves cheese fondue, with a strawberry daiquiri to cap it off.
You want to make sure you have fresh breath, so after dinner you pop in an Altoid or other such breath candy . . . . STOP! Although you may have a cinnamon-like taste in your mouth, what you've really just done is made your bad breath problem MUCH worse. Let me explain: During dinner, you introduced two 'triggers' to your mouth (protein and alcohol) that weren't previously there and made your particular oral environment very eager to begin creating those foul-smelling VSC's. Then after dinner, by sucking on that mint, you actually gave those bacteria a food source they LOVE (sugar) to help along the VSC production. Yes, it's true you TASTE cinnamon or mint, but that's only a temporary cover up and what people actually SMELL is usually a lot worse!
ZOX is The First Breath Mint To Actually NEUTRALIZE Bad Breath Production.
I created ZOX because I wanted to address the fact that almost all the other 'breath mints' on the market DO NOT take into account the principles of halitosis prevention that I've been studying for the last 10 years! Most of them are created to TASTE GOOD and that's about it. ZOX was created based on the same clinically proven Zinc/Oxygen/Xylitol principles used by the rest of the TheraBreath product line. It is literally bad breath prevention science packed into a roll of breath mints!
First, ZOX have no sugar - your breath mint should NEVER have sugar in it. ZOX uses xylitol which is a natural sweetener and has also been proven to have tremendous anti-decay properties. Next, we added zinc gluconate for it's ability to literally put a "straight-jacket" around those 'bad-breath producing' anaerobic bacteria. Zinc Gluconate blocks the receptors on the anaerobic bacteria so that they don't bind with the amino acids. And if they don't bind with the amino acids, then they don't produce VSC's! ZOX contains no aspartame, no saccharin, and no artificial colors or flavors. ZOX has been specifically created for the sole purpose of preventing bad breath, and removing metallic tastes, NOT for just covering them up. The longer you keep a ZOX in your mouth, the more volatile sulfur compounds it will neutralize. Plus, each mint is only 5 calories, so you can have as many as you want. The bottom line is that ZOX are the first and only breath mint to neutralize bad breath based on the clinically proven methods practiced by the California Breath Clinics over the past 10 years. For control of 'occasional' or 'situational' bad breath there is nothing better than ZOX. All my Best, -Harold Katz, DDS