Monday morning pop quiz!
True or false? This is a dog chew:
How about this?
Huh-uh. It’s for people.
Designed for those times when you’ve just had a meal but can’t sneak away to brush your teeth, the Rolly is a small rubber disc covered in 276 spiky bristles that promises to be as effective at cleaning your teeth as brushing, when chewed like a piece of gum. [Or, we might add, like a chew toy.]
Besides reaching into every nook and cranny of your mouth, and gently stimulating your gums while you chew it, the Rolly contains Xylitol and Fluoride which are claimed to fight plaque and strengthen tooth enamel. And using the small disc doesn’t require toothpaste, a mirror, or even water to rinse your mouth out afterwards. When you’re done, you just spit it into the garbage like a piece of gum.
Does it work? Who knows? It still looks like a repurposed, rebranded dental pet chew. Maybe the manufacturer was inspired by Big Pharma: “Once upon a time, there was Prozac. Then its patent was set to expire. Suddenly, there was Sarafem: same drug, different color, new FDA-approved use, continued profits…”
Of related interest: “Why Do the Same Drugs Look Different? Pills, Trade Dress, and Public Health” (NEJM)