Man Pouring Mouthwash In To Cap

You know brushing and flossing daily is essential to maintaining clean teeth. But what about mouthwash? Should this extra step be part of your daily routine? Read on to learn more about why you might consider mouthwash, the types available, how to use it, and what precautions you should take if you use it.

Why Use Mouthwash
If your dentist is concerned about plaque, gingivitis, or tooth decay, they may recommend that you use mouthwash to help control these symptoms. If your oral health is good, you may use mouthwash to refresh your breath and leave a clean taste in your mouth.

Types of Mouthwash
Therapeutic mouthwashes, which contain active ingredients that kill bacteria, are usually suggested by a dentist to help reduce plaque, gingivitis, and tooth decay. Some types of therapeutic mouthwashes must be prescribed by a dentist, while others are available over the counter. Cosmetic mouthwashes, which are mainly used to mask bad breath, do not contain active ingredients and can be purchased at a grocery or drug store.

How to Use
Mouthwash should be used after brushing and flossing your teeth, but keep in mind that it is not a substitute for either! It’s important to use mouthwash as directed, whether it is prescription or cosmetic. Most mouthwashes should be used one to two times a day. Pour the recommended amount into a cup or lid and swish it in your mouth for the suggested amount of time, usually 30 seconds. Spit the mouthwash in the sink and refrain from eating or drinking (even water) for 30 minutes.

Mouthwash Precautions
Over-the-counter mouthwashes are available in different strengths. While some are mild, others contain alcohol and can irritate the gums. You may need to try several varieties to find one that works for you. Mouthwash should not be swallowed and should never be given to children under six years old. If you have open sores in your mouth, consult your dentist before using mouthwash, as it may be harmful.

In conclusion, mouthwash can benefit some but is not necessary for a teeth cleaning routine if you have good oral health. The best way to determine if you should use mouthwash is to visit the dentist! To schedule an appointment with Vacendak Dentistry, call us at (757) 609-3510 or request an appointment online.