While your dentist stresses the importance of flossing daily and brushing your teeth at least twice a day, does your dentist ever encourage you to rinse with a mouthwash? Probably not. Well, that may make you question why there are so many choices of mouthwash on the dental aisle at the drug store, and it may make you question all of the claims that they are making with regards to bettering your oral health.
The question is, “Is mouthwash necessary?” The short answer is, “No.” However, there is more than a simple one-word response for most people. The truth of the matter is that mouthwash is not necessary for those who practice optimal oral hygiene on a daily basis. Brushing and flossing are enough when you do them every single day. Floss is the only tool that is designed to remove plaque and small food particles from the tight spaces between the teeth. Toothbrushes were designed to clean plaque from the surfaces of the teeth, to clean the tongue and gums, and to freshen your breath. If you are not flossing every day, you are leaving your gums vulnerable to gum disease because plaque is made up of millions of bacteria that will attack your gums. If you are not brushing your teeth at least twice a day, you are leaving even more plaque buildup on your teeth that will begin eating away at your tooth enamel.
While nothing can take the place of flossing and brushing, mouthwash can benefit those who do not floss or brush as often as they should; as well as benefit those who are more susceptible to gingivitis or cavities. Choosing a mouthwash with the American Dental Association’s seal of approval is essential because it will be guaranteed to have
Ingredients that will fight against cavities and help lower your chance for gum disease. Pregnant women can also benefit from rinsing with mouthwash throughout their entire pregnancy because the huge fluctuation in hormones causes the gums to become more easily irritated and infected. Gum disease in pregnant women has be directly linked to miscarriage, pre-term labor, and low birth weight babies. By rinsing with mouthwash throughout pregnancy, women can lower their risk for complications associated with oral health issues.
Most dentists would not label mouthwash as a “necessary component” to your oral health, but the benefits of mouthwash cannot be disputed. If you have questions regarding mouthwash and how it can benefit you, contact Peninsula Cosmetic & Family Dentistry today.