Saving Smiles

TV viewers in the 1970s and 1980s watched as the Crest Team used their giant toothbrushes to defeat the awful Cavity Creeps and save the city of Toothopolis.

Had it not been for researchers at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana, the Crest Team and their giant tubes of toothpaste wouldn’t have been around to save the day.

Dr. Joseph Muhler, Dr. Harry Day, and Dr. William Nebergall discovered how to fluoridate toothpaste in the early 1950s. The university patented the product.

Procter & Gamble, who formed the research team, paid royalties for the formula and introduced it to consumers in test markets in 1955 under the name “Crest with Fluoristan.”

Four years after its January 1956 national rollout, the American Dental Association confirmed the toothpaste effectively prevents tooth decay.

Today, the toothpaste simply is known as “Crest.”

For more information about the Indiana University School of Dentistry, call 317-274-7957 or visit

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