CWT and remineralization of cavities

Dear Dr. Ellie,

I have been using your CWT system diligently for the last five months. I started chewing xylitol mints (about 9 gms a day) two months before that, so I’ve been at it for more than six months. I felt really good about it, and my gums improved dramatically. However, the system caused considerable staining near the gums and between my teeth (I have some gum recession caused by adult orthodontics for 3.5 years). I went to the dentist today for my cleaning and the hygienist scraped so hard that my gums started bleeding. Also, she used the Diagnodent laser that detects cavities, and said that all the old cavities that she had detected at earlier visits looked the same, and I had a new cavity on the biting surface of the last molar. How could that happen? I feel quite discouraged. I have followed the recommended system of rinses, Crest toothpaste and xylitol “to the T”.

Will the cavities get better with continued use of the system, or will I be left filling all my teeth? Also, can you recommend any dentist in Indianapolis, Indiana, who believes in remineralization of teeth? Thank you very much in advance. I think you are doing us all a big service by maintaining your blog and providing advice.


Hi J,

Stay focused and lets talk about everything one item at a time!

First it is wonderful news that your gums are better. This will have a direct impact on your health. Gum disease is progressive and gets worse if not corrected. Congratulations on six months of improvement with your gum health!

Next I would like you to read what I have written about staining on my website: Here is the link

Basically staining can occur if you make a big change to your oral health (which you have done).
When leaves fall off trees they take away the “debris” from the tree. We notice their color as they collect around the base of the tree. This is almost the same thing with your teeth the dead plaque collects as a stain band around your teeth.

At present I think the best way to remove this stain is to go to the dentist and have a cleaning.
(However, I am testing the use of Nano particle Silver Solution rinsed or maybe brushed onto teeth to see if this can remove these stains I will let you know.)

Now let’s talk about diagnosis, cavities and fillings. I wonder why they did not diagnose with X rays? On X ray you can often see a cavity “filling in”.

It sounds as if your dentist is not a believer in remineralization many dentist do not know that fillings can reverse. There is a list of dentists who believe in “minimally invasive dentistry” on a website

Of course there are times when the filling is so deep it may not repair completely. There are times to fill a tooth because it is unsightly or because food collects in the hole (cavity).

If your diagnosis is being taken with diagnodent equipment I would believe that this tooth is most likely not giving you any problems and that this lesion is small. Six months is barely enough time for remineralization plus you may have risk factors that are working against you.

In a totally healthy mouth (with alkaline saliva and a nice wet mouth) teeth can remineralize quickly. In a dry or an acidic mouth you have to work a little harder and wait a little longer.

Special notes:
I would make sure that when you rinse with ACT at the end of your system you keep it in your mouth for as long as possible (3 minutes?) Spit the ACT out but make sure that you do not eat or drink after using this rinse especially last thing at night.

If you are a mouth breather make sure you protect your teeth from everything that you eat or drink and when your mouth is dry best to use some Zellies mints or gum.

I am not in a position to give you any advice about fillings but personally I see no reason why these teeth will not remineralize themselves.

Don’t be discouraged be happy about your gum health and hang in there maybe a little more ACT one extra time a day?

I would be happy to chat on the phone call me if you like!

Dental Health for Everyone!
26, Corporate Woods,
Rochester NY 14623

Categories: Remineralization

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  • Anonymous says:

    Wow, there is certainly a bit of mis-information here.Dr. Phillips, with all due respect, I would like to see your personal research and clinical, peer-reviewed studies that validate some of your claims, as some of the things here on your site actually defy certain laws of chemistry and I notice you provide no foundation -such as Xylitol "remineralizes teeth." While it does inhibit bacterial growth due to it's unique 5-carbon structure, claiming a sugar alcohol has the ability to bond calcium, zinc and phosphorus to crystalline enamel structures in teeth is just not possible.Of course, chewing Xylitol gum is great because it helps keep the saliva constantly flowing. It's our saliva that remineralizes teeth, not Xylitol."J's" problem with additional carries (aside from a lack of reduction) is muti-facetedFirst of all, your "CTW System" uses Listerine -more effective in marketing than oral hygiene. While Listerine contains many essential oils known to benefit oral health, it also contains alcohol …which, yes, is also known to kill bacteria. The problem is, alcohol is a "cutting agent" for essential oils. Combining these together renders them virtually inert and useless. So, while Listerine does kill SOME bacteria, typical studies reveal that number is close to around 10%, at best -explaining why Listerine has been sued (and lost) for some if its claims it could not back up with any clinical research. (…and we know J&J has plenty of markeing $dollars$)Compare this to a product containing CPC in areas of 40% to 70% reduction (I challenge you to do the research yourself). One of the best oral rinses I've discovered is BreathRX, as it contains the highest concentration of CPC on the market at .075% -slightly higher than the Crest brand at .07% (Crest rinse is my #2 choice) in addition to BreathRX having essential oils similar to Listerine (but without alcohol to make them inert) that both kill bacteria and help to remineralize teeth. It's all printed directly on the labels.Secondly, the popular Crest paste is a poor choice for multiple reasons. Other liquids and powders (without glycerin, et al) are a much better choice. Even a simple 50-50 mix of ordinary table salt and baking soda (mixed with several drops of 3% peroxide) would be *MUCH* more beneficial and effective than Crest paste -kills WAY more bacteria, cheaper, more effective and safer (no chemicals). Of course, you don't make any profit suggesting this.Third, fluoride, while proven to harden teeth temporarily, is merely a band-aid to a larger problem (typically a nutritional and mineral deficiency) that "J" should address. In the meantime, I suggest Phos-Fluor (by Colgate) over the ACT because it contains Phosphorous -a known building block of bones and teeth.Finally, (I may have missed it?) but I didn't see anything that talks about how long to brush. Although the rule is "4 minutes" with a manual brush, the Oral-B 3D electric sets their timer on "2 minutes" …and I still say a FULL 4 minutes. It's less about getting teeth scrubbed perfectly clean and more about letting the brushing "chemicals" do their work for +4 minutes. You gotta kill that bacteria. 1-2 minutes just doesn't cut it.Hopefully you won't delete my post. It's great what you're trying to do to help others with this true epidemic, but "J" should have had much better results by now. 60 days is more than enough to have amazing results and I'm living proof. Telling someone to "keep the faith" for +6 months… something's definitely not right.Hopefully this knowledge will go to benefit others and not be lost against continued profits.-Someone Who Love's Their Teeth

  • Dr. Ellie says:

    I would not dream of deleting your comment.We will put it out there and let readers decide – (they obviously can, and they obviously will 🙂 I think it would be great to know your profession and a little more about you. This would be helpful for evaluating your suggestions. I have stated over and over that I am a humble dentist. I was taught how to treat patients – but for 35 years I have built knowledge through clinical outcomes and by listening to feedback. Most of my life I have looked into the mouths of hurting patients and giving them my best advice.I have always asked patients a lot of questions. I put together biochemistry from the books I read, with the results I saw in peoples’ mouths – like puzzle pieces.It was only through years of looking at teeth and reading that I began to understand more about why some suggestions seemed to work and some did not. I give the best advice that I can give, based on life experience. I share this advice on my website – to help those who need help.I happen to be skeptical like you. I question advice. I agree that studies can make products look good. It is real life results that are important.Marketing can make people believe things that are not true – and many oral care products do not give the results they describe. If you want a perfect example of this – look at tooth bleaching products. Wow! Now we can agree about mis-information! (Tooth enamel is colorless – the color of a tooth is determined by the way light is reflected through enamel. Crest white strips are so acidic they will etch and strip the surface of a tooth: where is this described on the box? I cannot imagine how much damage is being done to enamel – but more importantly to the inner part of the tooth.) I do not charge for my advice.I support my website because I care to spread my message about oral health.I tell people the truth as I know it. I give support to those who cannot find it elsewhere. Many dentist have never suggested patients clean their toothbrushes! I do not have resources to do clinical trials and prove the effects of my mouth rinse system.I have testimonials – although you would obviously discount them. Perhaps you have a better system to suggest.Is there a website that people could read more about what you advise? I am not here to fight, challenge or dispute. I give the best advice that I can. Honestly.Thank you for taking the time to write and for your comment. Ellie

  • LH says:

    Wow. “Anonymous” needs to read your blog more thoroughly before hurling such mean-spirited accusations. I wonder how much of it he actually did read… A very rude, inappropriate, and thoughtless comment, I think.

  • Dr. Ellie says:

    The fillings that were suggested were to fill the crevices of back molar teeth. A debate about how long to brush is irrelevant for this, since tooth brush bristles are too large to go into these crevices. Repair of fissures depends solely on the liquids that enter them. This is why I like the liquid system that I recommend. We can debate the effectiveness of Listerine – it does not matter since in this case it is also for an acidic preparation to enhance the benefits of ACT. I select ACT for its sodium fluoride content and also for the coating properties of the product. ACT flows easily over a tooth and enters grooves and pits and since it does not flow too fast ( unlike other liquid fluoride products)- some residue of ACT will linger. As we have stated – the longer the 0.05 % fluoride is in contact with a tooth – the more time it has to act as a catalyst and help remineralization occur. Finally – on the comment about xylitol and remineralization: The commentator is correct that xylitol itself does not remineralize teeth – but it stimulates a natural reaction in the mouth that results in remineralization. I will clarify.Xylitol stimulates a flow of mineral rich saliva. The pH of the mouth is simultaneously raised by the xylitol to around 7.6.At this particular pH, minerals in saliva are able to flow INTO tooth enamel. Finally I want to mention that I spoke with this patient J on the phone. She is over 40 years old and has never had a cavity in these teeth. No symptoms of any kind with sweet, hot or cold. I would expect that many of my dental peers to also raise an eyebrow and be a little skeptical.It is unusual for a patient of this age to suddenly have occlusal caries in previously cavity free fissures. No explanation for this from major life or dietary changes. It seems a little strange not to have any confirming X ray. The exam was a 2 minute review with diagnodent equipment.The patient does not want fillings. I would want to weigh the benefits of avoiding fillings vs risk of allowing caries to progress.If this were a teen with bad diet and bad oral hygiene – then the situation would be completely different.Dentists should diagnose with a view of the big picture – called the patient! Interesting and hopefully informative for everyone!Ellie

  • Annie says:

    Anon, Cetylpyridinium chloride (cpc) in BreathRx has been proven to stain teeth. I had a bottle of it and threw it out. Also, you’re against crest toothpaste and advice brushing with salt? lol. Ok.

  • Dr. Ellie says:

    Hello all, and thank you for your interest in this topic. I believe that it is good to have a healthy open conversation on these subjects and hopefully we can all learn from eachother. To clarify:1.) I do not recommend Breath Rx2.) I do not recommend brushing with salt (too abrasive) although I have recommended warm salt rinses as an alkaline rinse or if you have infection in the mouth.3.) I do recommend Crest Original toothpaste as the only toothpaste for my Complete Mouth Care system.If you have any questions, you can feel free to email me directly at

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