Are All Mouthwashes Equal?
Mouthwash is an important part of a rigorous dental health regimen, and has been around in one type or another for thousands of years, though it’s only entered common use since the 1960s. An anti-septic mouth rinse, mouthwash has been shown to be useful in aiding in the prevention of the buildup of plaque and lowering the associated risk of gingivitis and decay, as well as for fighting bad breath. There are numerous brands and types of mouthwash available on the market today, but are they all worthy tools in preventing dental issues?
The short answer is: no. The longer answer is that there are two types of mouthwash, cosmetic and therapeutic. Cosmetic mouthwash is mainly associated with keeping the teeth free of debris and keeping breath smelling nice. Therapeutic mouthwash on the other hand is anti-bacterial in nature, making it effective against plaque, gingivitis, cavities, and bad breath. Obviously, therapeutic mouthwash is far more preferable, and on top of that, it’s easy to spot – just look for a recommendation from the Canadian Dental Association.
Beyond that simple division there are other things worth considering. Alcohol is a primary ingredient in many mouthwashes but can cause dry mouth, which paradoxically can irritate oral issues and cause bad breath. Alcohol-free mouthwashes are available as well, but many of those ingredients have side effects too. Some oils may have an unpleasant taste, and others with Chlorhexidine should only be used for a short time frame as they can brown teeth or change your sense of taste.
Mouthwash has its pros and cons, but on the whole it’s usually worth using as part of your at-home dental care routine, provided you stick with the therapeutic varieties. It’s also critical to remember, that no matter how good your mouthwash is, it is never a replacement for brushing and flossing. If you have any dental issues that mouthwash isn’t helping with, please contact us today, and we’ll do what we can to help.
We are accepting new patients! Pickering Square Dental continues to grow and continues to accept new patients. If you are considering a new dentist for you and your family, we invite you to stop by to meet our team and take a tour of our office or to schedule an appointment.more