These days, picking out the right mouthwash can feel like a monumental task, given the myriad of choices you have in the average grocery dental care aisle. Mouthwashes comes in a wide array of colors, flavors, and purposes, but making a choice can be hard if you don’t know exactly what you’re looking for. Making the right choice for your smile depends on knowing what different mouthwashes are supposed to achieve. This simple preventive dentistry guide looks at three of the most widely available types of mouthwash, discusses the advantages of each one, and provides suggestions for incorporating mouthwash into your at-home dental care regimen.
Every brand and variety of mouthwash has something to offer in the way of keeping your mouth healthy or, at the very least, fresh smelling. Some of the most common mouthwashes include:
Scope is one of the most well-known brands of cosmetic mouthwash in the U.S. Cosmetic mouthwashes are designed to improve your breath temporarily. The active ingredient in many cosmetic mouthwashes is cetylpyridinium chloride, which counteracts the odor-causing volatile sulfur compounds contained in certain foods (like onions and garlic) or released by oral bacteria in the mouth.
Listerine is one of the most well-known brands of antiseptic mouthwash in the U.S. These mouthwashes are designed to kill the bacteria living in plaque while leaving your mouth smelling fresh. These mouthwashes are often very harsh and bracing because they contain alcohol. Antiseptic mouthwash can’t take the place of brushing and flossing, but it can make a regular part of your dental health care routine.
ACT is one of the most well-known fluoride mouthwashes made for adults in the U.S. Most children’s mouthwashes are also fluoride mouthwash. These mouthwashes contain fluoride, a naturally occurring mineral that rebuilds tooth enamel. Although we often associate fluoride rinses with children, fluoride mouthwash can help adults strengthen their tooth enamel. Fluoride rinses are also helpful for people who drink mostly bottled water or who live in areas without a fluoridated municipal water supply.