Reasons to Avoid of Choose Using Mouthwash
You may have been taught your whole live that mouthwash is an important part of a good oral hygiene routine. Even to this day, you rinse with mouthwash every morning and evening. You’ve gotten use to the burning sensation and believe that the uncomfortable sensation means that the mouth rinse is doing its job in killing germs in your mouth and breaking down built-up plaque. Your mouth feels nice and fresh afterwards and you like the fresh breath you have.
As beneficial as mouthwash is, are there times when you should avoid using mouthwash?
Not everyone is the same and some have adverse reactions to mouthwash. Some simply should avoid using it because of the risk of exacerbating a negative personal lifestyle habit. Still others may be too young or have injuries in and around their mouths that can be irritated.
Here are some reasons patients either choose to avoid or should using mouthwash:
The Patient is Too Young
Children under the age of 6 should not use mouthwash because they are more likely to accidentally swallow it. Most mouth rinses contain alcohol and other ingredients that aren’t good for the body that could cause potential damage should it be regularly ingested. Children between the ages of 6 and 12 should be supervised when using mouth rinse.
There Are Open Wounds in the Mouth
While mouthwash does contain alcohol that kills germs that could further an infection in the mouth, this same alcohol can also destroy good germs and bacteria necessary for the healing of open sores in and around the mouth such as cold sores and severe cases of gum disease. Infections of tooth roots can also be made worse or the healing process be stalled when using mouthwash.
It is Used as A Crutch
For some patients, that tingling sensation and the fresh, minty breath they have after using mouthwash is a sign that their mouth is clean. These patients erroneously think that using a mouth rinse is all they need for a clean, healthy smile. Patients who overuse and rely on mouth rinses to give them healthy teeth and gums would benefit from either abstaining from using mouthwash and only floss and brush or drastically cut down how much mouth rinse they use a day and only use it after they floss and brush their teeth.
With most name-brand, traditional mouthwashes containing alcohol and other artificial ingredients, some patients are leery about consuming them. Instead, they may either forgo mouth rinses altogether or use a all-natural, homeopathic mouthwash alternatives, such as oil pulling.
Mouth Rinse Abuse
Though mouthwash has only a trace of alcohol in it, some patients may misuse it by using it for recreational use. Some of these patients may become addicted to mouthwash. Mouth rinse addiction is a real problem that often goes unnoticed and unreported. It is also easier to hide and cover-up than alcohol or drug abuse and addiction.
Similarly, those recovering from alcoholism or drug abuse should avoid using mainstream mouthwash as it can stall their recovery or even draw them back to addiction.
Mouthwash can be a good addition to one’s oral hygiene routine. Proper teeth brushing, flossing and regular cleanings and check-up at the dentist are the most important components of good oral hygiene. These techniques will dislodge and cut down on plaque build-up on the teeth and gums as well as destroy germs in the mouth. Mouthwash should only be used as a last step to compliment the aforementioned practices.
If you have any questions or concerns about using mouthwash or which mouth rinse is right for you, contact your dentist.