Health News Review

So I’m watching a network TV newscast the other night – the place where old people go to die in their sleep apparently based on the number of old peoples’ drug ads that appear therein – and I must not be there yet because I stayed awake long enough to see a commercial for a Crest toothpaste “selected for people over 50.”

Hey, I’m one of them.  And I still have all my teeth.  So I went on the web  to search further and found a Procter & Gamble news release that read as follows (the highlights are mine):

  • Crest Pro-Health For Life Toothpaste – defends against tooth sensitivity, tender inflamed gums, weak enamel and surface stains. This toothpaste was selected for people over 50 because it has a smoother formulation and protects all areas dentists check most.
  • Oral-B Pro-Health For Life Toothbrush – combines CrissCross® and Power Tip® bristles to help lift out and sweep away plaque from hard to reach places. This brush was selected for people over 50 because it has extra soft bristles.
  • Crest Pro-Health For Life Rinse – defends against, tender, inflamed gums from gingivitis, bad breath and plaque that brushing may miss. This rinse was selected for people over 50 because it is alcohol-free and provides a unique sensation.
  • Oral-B Glide Pro-Health For Life Floss – slides easily and cleans gently. The silky soft, shred-resistant ribbon removes plaque and food from in between teeth to help prevent cavities. This floss was selected for people over 50 because it is Glide’s softest floss.

I just turned 61.  So 11 years ago, when I became “over 50,” did I suddenly need to be treated with softness?  Because that didn’t happen.

And it shouldn’t have.

I looked all over for any data to back up these claims by Procter & Gamble.  I couldn’t find any.

If the company wants to provide any, we’ll be more than happy to scrutinize them.

Fair and balanced…and over 50…and feeling a need for softness.

Comments

Jan Henderson posted on December 5, 2012 at 8:35 pm

I had the same reaction to that ad, namely, that there was probably zero evidence for the over 50 claim and it was just marketing. We can only hope the public is increasingly skeptical and has wised up to such tactics. There’s a nice discussion of how pharma marketing works in a book I’m just reading, Drugs for Life: How Pharmaceutical Companies Define Our Health by Joseph Dumit. (& I know what you mean about that network :-) )

jimmy posted on December 11, 2012 at 10:33 am

I don’t see any problem with this…..it is silly to think a brush or paste is specially formulated for someone older than 50yrs but marketing is marketing. Did you ever wonder where the yellow went?