Mouthwash is an element of dental care that doesn’t seem to have the same level of respect as some others. In fact, about 52 percent of Americans don’t realize that using mouthwash provides valuable benefits to both their dental and overall health. While it’s true that brushing and flossing are arguably the most important steps you can take to care for your teeth at home, it’s highly recommended that you add the use of mouthwash to your daily routine.
What’s the Best Mouthwash for You?
With the array of mouth rinse options available today, it can be difficult to know which one is the right one for you. The list below can help you sort out the ones that are available to help any dental issues or health concerns you might have.
Bad breath is often a reason why people might consider using mouthwash. If that is your primary reason, and you don’t have significant tooth decay or gum disease, the best mouthwash for you will be one that contains zinc and chlorine. This is because these ingredients help defuse the sulfur compounds that cause foul smells.
Also, some mouth rinses contain cetyl pyridinium, a germicide that helps fight gum disease while also helping to fight plaque. These tend to taste better than antibacterial mouthwashes.
If you are also concerned about fighting gingivitis — perhaps better known as the first stage of gum disease — as well as bad breath, it’s better to look for an antibacterial mouthwash that contains certain ingredients. Products that contain methyl salicylate, eucalyptol, thymol, and menthol are the only ones that have earned the Seal of Acceptance from the American Dental Association (ADA) because of their effectiveness when it comes to reducing plaque and gum disease. In fact, studies have shown that using an antibacterial mouth rinse could slash the number of bacteria in your mouth by 75 percent on average.
If you have periodontitis, it’s likely that you’ll need a prescription mouthwash. Periodontitis occurs when gum disease has advanced to a serious infection. This infection destroys the bone that provides the support that teeth need to be healthy and functional.
A prescription mouthwash contains chlorhexidine as its active ingredient. Chlorhexidine has been proven to have greater antibacterial properties than the ingredients that are found in mouthwash brands that can be purchased over the counter. In addition to the fact that most prescription mouthwashes contain alcohol, the chlorhexidine they also contain can stain your teeth brown. For this reason, prescription mouthwashes require close monitoring by a dentist.
To get the best results out of using mouthwash, it’s important to know about the health of your mouth. By visiting your dentist as recommended, you have a regular assessment of your oral health and can choose your mouthwash accordingly. At Dupont Dental, we can perform a thorough dental checkup and make a recommendation regarding the best mouthwash for you. Contact us today to schedule an appointment!