Should you add mouthwash to your regular morning routine? While there is no correct answer for everyone, you can weight the pros and cons and decide for yourself if mouthwash would be a good addition to your dental hygiene routine.
The Benefits of Mouthwash
Using dentist-recommended mouthwash regularly can boost the health of your teeth and gums by removing bacteria and food particles that you may have missed. Antiseptic mouthwash temporarily helps keep your breath fresh and fights plaque and bacterial growth. Fluoride mouthwash can help your teeth build resistance to acid, which causes tooth decay.
Mouthwashes that prevent tooth decay include antimicrobial agents, such as alcohol, to kill gems. If used correctly, mouthwashes may help cut down on cavities, get rid of plaque, fight periodontal (gum) disease, and soothe canker sores by detoxifying the area and ridding your mouth of germs.
The Disadvantages of Mouthwash
Mouthwash as an aid to covering up bad breath does not eliminate the root causes of bad breath, such as gum disease. It simply masks the symptom to a more serious problem. Which is why it is important for you to get a comprehensive dental exam, to rule out other dental issues. Also, the high alcohol content in mouthwash can irritate the tissues in your mouth, and is not recommended for people with voice issues.
How to Use Mouthwash Properly
Never use mouthwash as a substitute for brushing and flossing; use it only as a complement to your existing hygiene practices. Use the amount recommended by the manufacturer and follow instructions on the bottle. Close your lips and keep your teeth apart when gargling. Then, spit out the mouthwash and rinse with lukewarm water.
You may want to wait about 30 minutes after rinsing before you eat or drink, in order for the mouthwash to be as effective as possible. You should use mouthwash regularly in order to see its benefits.
Mouthwash can be a beneficial part of your oral care routine because it reaches parts of your mouth that brushing and flossing can’t. However, it can cause more harm than good if you use it as a substitute for other types of tooth care. If you make mouthwash part of an overall regimen of good dental hygiene, however, and make sure to choose American Dental Association-approved products, you should be able to reap the benefits without experiencing harmful effects.
Consult your dentist and consider your personal situation before making a decision on whether or not to use mouthwash.
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