Ellie Says: It’s Your Choice!

Below is an email conversation between Ellie and a person interested in her advice on oral care. We invite you to comment freely.

Dr. Ellie,

Hello. I have some questions. Every study I read, regarding Listerine’s effect on composite restorations is negative – except for the study on Listerine’s website. Even the Closys website tags some studies http://www.closys.com/research.html. It softens restorations and effects the bonding – I’ve read too many articles to post – but it’s enough to be a consensus. Why are these studies ignored in your system. Also, studies have shown that Listerine release mercury from amalgams. This study had nothing to do with the amalgam alarmists agenda. It’s a fact. ACT was also shown to affect composite restorations. I’m concerned. Would it be fair to say that your system is great for those who are restorative free and at minimum – risky – for those with restorations. There are so many adhesives and composite materials, and then there is the technique of the dentist – all plays a part in the negative effects, but, I have yet to find evidence in study that Listerine does not cause a negative result to composite hardness and the bond. My personal situation is that my fillings are large (probably shouldn’t even be fillings but onlays and they are close to the nerve). I’m very concerned about the longevity of these restorations. I’m not writing to argue but I would like a response to the data that is out there. The data supports Closys and even Crest (minus the SLS) – but the Listerine and the ACT issues with restorations. The most compelling evidence I found was that a dry toothbrush with no paste was best at removing plaque. I also read that Tooth Soap does a better job antiseptically and remineralizing teeth (because of lack of glycerin) which helps saliva (and xylitol) remineralize. Also, the data shows that flouride is dose dependent for caries risks. I don’t have all the answers and I”m not a dentist, but I’m reading university and worldwide studies in Pakistan, Europe, US and the consensus seems to be what I’m presenting to you for your feedback. If you can, could you please explain why this data is not recognized regarding your system because most of us have restorative dentistry.



Dear J:

you are free to choose.


Dear Dr. Ellie:

Why do you respond in length to others and I get these kind of responses? Do you wish for me to advertise this response online or would you like to treat me with some level of respect and courtesy?


I have already given you a great deal of my time – freely over several YEARS.

I have spoken to you on the phone at length more than once.

I have corresponded and answered your questions, even personally referred you to a specialist.

I imagine that of all the dental experts you have consulted – I have been the best value ever!

I suggest you use the system that I recommend.

Period. I use it. I have fillings – composite and amalgam from 40+ years ago.

I keep abreast of the research and when I no longer recommend my system – I will take down my website and end the printing of my book.

I spend my time and effort to help as many people as possible -for FREE.

I help those without insurance, those without money, those who are being given crazy advice for their children.

The studies you quote about Listerine, for example, are not suggesting using Listerine’s after Crest Cavity Protection toothpaste or followed by ACT.

I agree that Listerine used alone could be detrimental to those with acidic risk or dry mouth.

Most studies do not take individual risk factors into account.

Delving into an argument with you about these details is too exhausting.

I am saving my energy to help others – children with cavities – families without a dentist.

I am sorry if you feel YOU need more of MY time to answer and defend the system that I recommend.

I will save you time and effort and POST your question + my reply – on my blog for over 10,000 people to read.

I will ask blog readers to please contact me if they agree with you – and think I need to be more courteous and respectful!

I am inviting comments from readers please!

The point is that everyone out there is free to choose what they use and whom you believe.

I try to help by giving the best information that I can give. TAKE IT OR LEAVE IT – your choice.


Categories: Uncategorized


  • KKC says:

    Hi, Dr. Ellie, All,Wow, I certainly wasn't expecting this on my visit to "Ask Dr. Ellie."I have found Dr. Ellie Phillips to be one of the most polite, generous, dedicated health-bloggers on the web. Her site is open for all to avail ourselves of her knowledge and experience. Dr. Ellie strikes a fine balance of professionalism and warmth.The "Complete System" that Dr. Ellie recommends is just that…a System of oral care that is to be used in its entirety, just as spelled out. Deviation might very well not yield the same results. In many places on her site and in the book Dr. Ellie makes it crystal clear that not only are certain Name-brand products to be used, they are to be used in a precise manner, in specific order. The reasons for *these* products in *this* order are clearly stated. To the OP, none of your studies take these particularities of Dr. Ellie's System into account. I would suggest you take this into consideration when deciding how best to take care of your teeth & gumsBest,KKC

  • Anonymous says:

    I understand the persons frustration. No doubt, you can take information from Dr. Ellie, share it with another dental "expert" and get a conflicting opinion. It's the sad state of consumer confusion. I don't think the person meant any ill-will. Sounds like he/she is doing their research and is trying to sort it out. We have to be careful in interpreting "tone-to-type". If this person didn't respect Dr. Ellie, they wouldn't have reached out. I think patience and understanding of consumer confusion should be extended and even appreciated. I don't think there was any bad intentions on behalf of the OP. We're all in this together.

  • Dr. Ellie says:

    You are right – and I understand that we all get frustrated with the world, odd comments and even emails!Let's look at the history of life over the centuries – there has always been confusion caused by a lack of ethics, personal opinions posing for facts, and inaccurate or false advertising and marketing.It's been around a long time!I used to think I needed to manufacture my own "line" of mouth rinses. This idea was supported by lots of "dental MBA's" who told me this was the only way to make a living out of what I was doing.I decided to forge a new path -and do some education in a way that seemed "right" and "honest".I am happy with this path – because anyone ( the shopper) can get the advice they need and go to the grocery store and buy the products they need. This shopper must KNOW that I have nothing to gain by them using or not using the products.There are plenty of people ( especially MBA's) who must wonder WHY I do this!The answer is deep. I believe that I was fortunate to learn this knowledge about oral health.It was not my brilliance, just a chance thing. Now I believe that it is my mission to share this knowledge with others.Thanks again for your comment – and yes, we are all in this together!Ellie

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