An advert for Oral-B Gum and Enamel Repair toothpaste has been banned by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) for implying that the product could be used for medicinal purposes.
The ASA investigated the ad following a complaint from seven viewers, including a qualified dental nurse.
The ad featured two different women. The first woman stated, “I’ll pretend I didn’t feel that twinge” after sipping her drink and the second woman stated, “Ah, my gums feel really sore. No big deal right?” A dental professional replied saying, “Wrong. Actually most problems start with your gums and enamel. Tackle them, tackle most things.” The voice-over then stated, “New Oral B Gum and Enamel Repair toothpaste. Its active repair technology helps rejuvenate gums and repair enamel in just two weeks.”
During the ad small print stated “Dramatisation gum rejuvenation. Rejuvenates helps to restore gum condition” and “Repair in laboratory study on weakened enamel. Remineralisation”.
According to the ASA, the advert purposed to make a medicinal claim when it did not, thereby breaching a rule that states that medicinal claims could only be made for a product that was licensed by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), or under the auspices of the European Medicines Agency (EMA), or for a CE-marked medical device.
Since the advertised toothpaste was neither licensed as a medicine by the MHRA nor registered as a medical device the ad was not permitted to make medicinal claims, and the ASA ruled that the advert must not appear again in its current form.