Question: I’ve been using mouthwash for a few years, and I like the way it makes my mouth feel, but is it really helping?
Opinions about this matter greatly differ depending who you ask, and we’re sure many people have this question. While mouthwashes do have some benefits, the bottles often claim that they are helping more than they likely are.
One thing mouthwash can certainly help with is halitosis, or, bad breath. Swishing an alcohol-based or non-alcohol based mouthwash around for a minute or so will help break down the bacteria in the mouth while also washing away some food particles. These both contribute to a foul odor in the mouth.
In terms of actually helping with plaque build up and gum disease, mouthwashes vary in their effectiveness. According to an Atlantic Magazine article:
Since the mid-1980s, six-month trials have repeatedly shown that using mouthwash actually has an appreciable effect on plaque and gingivitis, though to varying degrees. In one meta-analysis comparing prescription-strength and over-the-counter solutions, products like Listerine wound up reducing dental plaque in patients by between 13 percent and 56 percent, with a reduction in gingivitis of between 14 percent and 36 percent. Non-alcoholic rinses, such as Crest Pro-Health, had a 15 percent effect on plaque and gingivitis, respectively.
Have more questions about mouthwash? Contact the professionals at DentaLux today!