Mouthwash: To Use or Not to Use

Who doesn’t like that minty kick that occurs after a nice mouth full of mouthwash? But, did you know mouthwash has a lot of health benefits, too? Take a look at your label next time you are using your mouthwash. You may find out it is known to be a plaque terminator, gum-disease fighter, even a teeth whitener.

However, you may ask yourself, are these claims 100% true? Is mouthwash really good for your teeth? As it turns out, the answer is both yes, and a no.

Pros of Using Mouthwash

There are quite a few pros when it comes to mouthwash. Here are the four main pros of using mouthwash:

1) Decrease in Cavities

When rinsing with fluoride mouthwash, it actually does help reduce cavities. There are a lot of studies on the benefits that fluoride helps reduce the number of cavities you get.

2) Lower Risk of Gum Disease

Gum disease is very crucial. Mouthwash helps lower the risk of getting gingivitis and periodontal disease. These diseases inflame or infect the gums and tooth sockets because of the plaque from bacteria. Food also sticks to your teeth when you do not brush them.

3) Relieve Canker Sores

Do you get canker sores from time to time? They can be quite painful and sometimes to the point where you do not want to eat. However, mouthwash can relieve your canker sores by eliminating the bacteria that irritates the site.

4) Pregnancy

You are probably wondering how mouthwash and pregnancy are linked together. Well, periodontal disease actually increase the risk of giving birth early and birthing underweight babies. The bacteria from the infection can easily get into your bloodstream, which increases inflammatory markers, which can start-up contractions.

Cons of Using Mouthwash

Like any other product, there are actually cons for mouthwash, too. Here are the three main cons of using mouthwash:

1) Irritates Canker Sores

Yes, mouthwash can help relieve canker sores. However, if the mouthwash has too much alcohol content in it, you may end up irritating the canker sore rather than helping it.

2) Hides Bad Breath

Ever just used mouthwash instead of actually brushing your teeth? You think it will hide your hideous breath, which is does, but it does not hide it for long. If you have poor oral hygiene and do not brush every day or brush poorly it does not matter if you use the entire bottle. Your mouth will still stink.

3) Oral Cancer

Since the 1970s, there has been this huge discussion about mouthwash being linked to oral cancer. However, no one can really say if it does or it doesn’t. However, you have to remember that the ADA puts a seal of approval on all products that have been thoroughly researched. This is the source to trust.

It all boils down to what is right for you. What may work for you, may not work for your friend or family. It is best to try a few different mouthwashes to get a feel for which one you like the best. It is also important to keep practicing good oral hygiene and do not substitute brushing with mouthwash.

 

 

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