16 January 2021


When oral hygiene is considered, regular brushing and flossing of teeth are the foremost things to be followed. After brushing and flossing the teeth, it is necessary to rinse the mouth with an over-the-counter mouthwash. It removes the leftover food particles from the mouth and also protects the teeth from gum and teeth diseases.

There are different types of over-the-counter mouthwashes available in the market.

1. Fluoride Mouthwash
Fluoride strengthens the teeth enamel and also protects the teeth and gums from decay. When a mouthwash that contains fluoride compounds like sodium fluoride is administered, it protects dental health. But you must be careful while using fluoride mouthwash if you are using fluoride toothpaste and tap water that contains fluoride because too much of fluoride is not good for health.

2. Mouthwash with Alcohol
Antiseptic mouthwash contains alcohol that sanitizes the mouth by flushing out all the bacteria, but these mouthwashes can be of discomfort if you have an open sore in the mouth or suffering from gum disease. Prolonged use of the alcohol mouthwash leads to discoloration of the teeth and dry the mouth. Also, if children drink the mouthwash containing alcohol, it could be harmful to their health thus, it is necessary to keep it away from children and try other alternatives.

3. Mouthwash without Alcohol
This is a perfect alternative for alcohol mouthwash as it does not cause discomfort due to open sores, and also it is safe for use in children. The cetylpyridinium chloride present in these mouthwashes reduces the plaque build-up on the teeth.

4. Cosmetic Mouthwash
Cosmetic mouthwash does not have many dental benefits but is primarily used to mask the bad breath. Though it is not a permanent solution for bad breath, it can help freshen your mouth for a few hours.


1. Prevents Plaque Build-up
Dental plaque or tooth plaque is an extremely sticky, colorless to the yellow film that sticks on the teeth and the gaps between the teeth and the gums. Plaque is formed when saliva, food and fluids combine producing bacterial deposits. These deposits release acid that attacks the tooth enamel and spoil the gums. If these deposits are left unremoved, they can lead to tooth decay and gum diseases.
Rinsing the mouth with mouthwash, removes the food residues and bacterial deposits from the mouth and prevent further plaque build-up and dental disorders.

2. Prevents Drying of Mouth
When your mouth gets dry due to certain medications or due to the consumption of certain foods, rinsing the mouth with a mouthwash will keep your mouth moist for many hours.

3. Prevents Gum Diseases
Plaque build-up and bacterial infection spoil the gums. Gums are the foundation for healthy teeth, and when gums are damaged, teeth lose their strength and loosened creating gaps. Gums diseases like Gingivitis infect the dental sockets and gums, causing inflammation of gums and bacterial build-up. Rinsing the mouth with a suitable mouthwash removes bacteria and plaque strengthening the gums and preventing gum diseases in future.

4. Strengthen the Tooth Enamel
Mouthwash removes food residues like sticky, sugary candies from mouth while also reducing the acidic levels. These acidic levels create cavities and damage the enamel. Using a mouthwash can reduce the acidic levels in the mouth and keep the enamel strong and healthy. Fluoride mouthwash also strengthens the enamel.

5. Reduce Cavities in Children
Studies reveal that regular use of fluoride mouthwash has reduced the chances of cavities in children by more than fifty per cent. Cavities otherwise lead to misaligned, chipped or crooked set of permanent teeth in children.

When to use a mouthwash?
The ideal procedure would be to brush your teeth, floss them and then use a mouthwash. Rinse your mouth with water after using the mouthwash. You can also use a mouthwash whenever you wish to freshen your mouth and combat the bad breath. Though not a permanent solution, it can freshen your mouth for a few minutes to a couple of hours.

Along with the usage of mouthwash, maintain proper oral hygiene, drink plenty of water, eat healthy fruits and vegetables, and avoid smoking for ideal dental health. If you wish to find more information and counseling on how to maintain good oral health, visit the Elite Dental Care, your dental friend forever.