From Christina, Dental Hygienist:
Mouth rinses are a hot topic in dental hygiene. Almost daily, I am asked which mouth rinse is most beneficial. The answer isn’t easy, as more recent research has looked deeper into the active ingredients in mouth rinses and how they directly affect the mouth. Patients come to our office daily with conditions such as dry mouth, gum recession and cavities. These are all factors to take into account when recommending a mouth rinse.
Best Mouth Rinses for People Prone to Cavities
Recently, mouth rinses such as LISTERINE® have been shown to have a relatively low pH (making it acidic to our neutral saliva level of an average 6.7 pH). Patients who are at high risk for developing cavities should avoid any mouth rinse that have a pH below our average salivary pH. Acidity is linked to erosion of the enamel, but also affects gum recession areas further. Our root surface exposure is not as strong as our enamel, therefore, it is at greater risk for eroding at a faster rate.
A rinse such as LISTERINE® may be beneficial to lower the bacterial count in a mouth of a younger person who has a normal to high salivary flow and a low cavity risk. In this case, they would be able to neutralize the acidity in their mouth at a faster rate.
Best Mouth Rinses for Children and Teens
Anticavity rinses are popular amongst children and teens. Children may find fun in swishing with a popular brand such as ACT®. In addition to brushing, ACT® can be incorporated as an extra dose of fluoride to help prevent against cavities. ACT® is shown to have a more neutral pH, making it a decent selection for those seeking cavity protection. Be aware of several different types of ACT® rinses and avoid any with alcohol.
Best Mouth Rinses for Dry Mouth
Dry mouth sufferers may seek Biotene® rinses for relief. Biotene® Dry Mouth oral rinse is a more neutral rinse that can safely be used as a comforting measure. Any rinses containing alcohol should be avoided, as it will dry the tissues in our oral cavity more.
How to Have Fresh Breath
In terms of fresh breath, which most are seeking, your best bet is to thoroughly brush your tongue and stay hydrated. Avoid foods such as onions and garlic, those with high sulfur content that can contribute to bad breath. Many mouth rinses are more acidic and drying and do more harm than good in terms of looking to just “freshen your breath.” Chewing gum containing xylitol is a good option for on the go moments.
In any instance, consult with your hygienist or dentist with any questions regarding mouth rinse. They will keep you up to date on new research and studies and help guide you on what rinse may work for you.
Ask about what mouth rinse is best for you at your next appointment.
Family Dentist Tree is a family-oriented dental office located in Rochester, MN. Whether you need a cleaning, filling, crown, root canal, treatment for gum disease, or teeth whitening, we are here to help you with all your dental needs. We serve all ages, and our offerings include including family dental care and senior plans. Request an appointment online or call us at 507-288-1188.