Minty, refreshing, and cleansing – these are some of the ways you may describe how your mouth feels after rinsing it with mouthwash. But is it possible to have too much of a good thing? While mouthwash can help reduce the number of bacteria in your mouth, should you use mouthwash regularly? Let’s turn to your dentist in Cary to find out.
The Purpose of Mouthwash
Mouthwash is meant to be used in addition to brushing and flossing, and it’s not a replacement for these habits. There are several different types of mouthwash that can be used to help with anything from simply freshening breath fresh to actually reducing the risk of dental problems such as decay. Mouthwash can either be prescribed by your dentist in Cary or purchased at any grocery store. In both options, mouthwash can either contain alcohol or not.
Which Type of Mouthwash is Best?
There may be pros and cons to choosing a mouthwash that contains or doesn’t contain alcohol. While the brands that contain alcohol can appear to work better because of the burning sensation that often goes hand-in-hand with alcohol, that’s not necessarily true. Alcohol is typically an inactive ingredient, meaning it’s not necessary to still reap the benefits of the product. As with most medical and dental products, the best choice for you depends on your needs and what you prefer.
Is Mouthwash Necessary?
If you take great care of your teeth by brushing and flossing daily, you may not necessarily need to use a mouthwash. However, some patients prefer the extra-clean feeling that comes along with mouthwash use. Additionally, there are some patients who can benefit more from mouthwash than others. For example, if you have tooth sensitivity or chronic dry mouth, you may find mouthwash a crucial part of your oral hygiene routine. Ask your dentist in Cary whether or not you should use a mouthwash and which one is best for you, and make sure to choose a product with the ADA Seal of Acceptance.
How Often Should You Use Mouthwash?
There can be some debate about when and how often you should use mouthwash. The truth is, it depends on your specific needs as well as your chosen product. Most, but not all, mouthwash should be used on clean teeth after flossing and brushing. As far as how often you should use it, we recommend following both the guidelines on the label as well as the advice of your dentist. While side effects of mouthwash are rare, they can happen. Some of the most common side effects include:
- Dry mouth
- Teeth staining
- Sensitivity after using the mouthwash
- Canker sores or mouth sores
If you notice any of these signs of irritation, stop use and contact your dentist.
When it comes to the question of whether or not you should use mouthwash regularly, the answer is it’s typically safe to use mouthwash up to twice a day or as recommended by your dentist.