Many people use mouthwash as part of their oral care routine. Not only can mouthwash freshen your breath, but it can also promote good oral health. If you're considering using mouthwash because it's been suggested to you by your friends and family or even by an Edmonton dentist, then it's important to make sure you use it correctly.
The Azarko Dental Group has put together some tips to help you do just that. Here are some of the mouthwash dos and don'ts that we give to our patients at our Edmonton dental clinic.
- DON'T use mouthwash as a substitute for brushing and flossing.
Rinsing with mouthwash can help boost the effectiveness of your brushing and flossing habits, but it simply cannot remove plaque bacteria the way that brushing and flossing can. Mouthwash alone is not capable of rinsing away enough bacteria to keep you from developing cavities and gum disease. It can make a great addition to your oral care routine, but it should not make up the entirety of your oral care routine.
- DON'T use a mouthwash that contains alcohol.
Alcohol is a problematic mouthwash ingredient because it dries out the mouth. A dry mouth is more susceptible to acid attacks from plaque bacteria because there is less saliva available to flush the bacteria away. When choosing a mouthwash, it's best to stay away from any that contain alcohol.
- DO check out the other ingredients.
Mouthwashes come in a variety of formulas for different uses, each containing slightly different ingredients. A good mouthwash will always contain fluoride for preventing cavities and building strong tooth enamel. Mouthwashes may also contain antimicrobials for killing plaque bacteria and odour neutralizers for combatting bad breath. A mouthwash intended for teeth whitening will also contain peroxide. You can ask your Edmonton dentist about the type of mouthwash they would specifically recommend for your needs.
- DO swish with mouthwash for 30 to 60 seconds.
Mouthwash is generally meant to be swished around in the mouth for 30 to 60 seconds. Make sure you follow the directions on your specific bottle. Swishing for less than 30 seconds isn't usually enough time for the mouthwash to be effective while swishing for longer than a minute won't give you any additional benefits.
- DO continue visiting your Edmonton dentist on a regular basis.
Just as mouthwash isn't a substitute for brushing and flossing, it isn't a substitute for visits to a dentist either. Your teeth and gums should be regularly cleaned and examined at an Edmonton dental clinic. A dental hygienist will be able to clean any hard-to-reach areas that can become neglected in your regular oral care routine, and a dentist will make sure that you're not showing any signs of tooth decay or gum disease.
Using mouthwash is a great idea, but visiting your dentist regularly is an even better one. If it's time for your dental cleaning, then schedule an appointment at the Azarko Dental Group Edmonton dental clinic today.
14938 Stony Plain Rd.
Edmonton, AB T5P 3X8