Daily use of popular mouthwash brand 'could increase risk of cancer', claims scientist - who now warns that 'most people should not be using it'

A scientist has claimed that a popular mouthwash brand 'could increase risk of cancer' as he issues a warning that 'most people should not be using it.'

Boffins from the Institute of Tropical Medicine in Antwerp, Belgium, found that two species of bacteria were more prevalent after three months of daily mouthwash use.

Using Listerine Cool Mint mouthwash every day could increase the risk of developing esophageal and colorectal cancer a new scientific study has claimed.

The scientists discovered that two species of bacterium - Fusobacterium nucleatum and Streptococcus anginosus - which have both been linked to cancer were more abundant in the mouth after daily usage.

It is believed that the alcohol in the mouthwash may increase the level of bacteria inside the mouth, according to the academics.

Scientists from the Institute of Tropical Medicine in Antwerp, Belgium, found that two species of bacteria were more prevalent after three months of daily mouthwash use (stock image)

Scientists from the Institute of Tropical Medicine in Antwerp, Belgium, found that two species of bacteria were more prevalent after three months of daily mouthwash use (stock image)

The scientists discovered that two species of bacterium - Fusobacterium nucleatum and Streptococcus anginosus - which have both been linked to cancer were more abundant in the mouth after daily usage (stock image)

The scientists discovered that two species of bacterium - Fusobacterium nucleatum and Streptococcus anginosus - which have both been linked to cancer were more abundant in the mouth after daily usage (stock image)

Professor Chris Kenyon, a scientist at the university who worked on the study, told the Daily Telegraph that using the mouthwash 'could increase their risk of cancer and various infections.'

He also claimed: 'Most people should not be using it and if they do use it, they should use the preparations without alcohol and limit the use to a couple of days.'

Professor Kenyon and his colleagues made the discovery during an investigation into the impact of daily mouthwash use on STI risk among gay men when they made the finding.

The 59 participants used Listerine daily for three months followed by three months of placebo mouthwash or vice versa.

While the experiment only included Listerine, Professor Kenyon stressed that similar levels of bacteria would likely be found using other alcohol-based mouthwashes.

Using Listerine Cool Mint mouthwash every day could increase the risk of developing esophageal and colorectal cancer a new scientific study has found (stock image)

Using Listerine Cool Mint mouthwash every day could increase the risk of developing esophageal and colorectal cancer a new scientific study has found (stock image)

MailOnline have approached Kenvue, which owns the Listerine brand, for a comment.

In a statement to the Telegraph, a spokesperson for the company said: 'Kenvue welcomes and encourages scientific advancements and exchanges to promote everyday health.

'Based on our initial review, the published trial lacks several important design controls and adequate rigour to make any conclusions about potential impact to human health.'

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