Brushing and flossing are the foundations of a healthy dental hygiene regimen, but it turns out that they should be a trifecta. Mouthwash is a crucial last step in any regimen, and dentist Joseph Field, DDS, of California suggests using it at least once a day—ideally every time you brush.
Mouthwash not only aids in the release of food particles and the neutralization of smells, but it also aids in the prevention of plaque. This is because mouthwash destroys germs, according to cosmetic dentist Brian Harris, DDS. According to the Cleveland Clinic, bacteria can convert into plaque when combined with sugary or starchy meals, despite the fact that it is a normal element of the mouth’s ecology.
Top Selling Mouthwash
9 Best Mouthwashes, according to Dentists
There is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all mouthwash, as there is with most other items. Daniel Rubinshtein, a New York-based dentist who became famous on TikTok last year for his films of cosmetic dental makeovers, tells Health that formulations targeted to particular oral issues like dry mouth, periodontal disease, or gum inflammation are crucial to identify. He also recommends looking for products that have received the American Dental Association (ADA) stamp of approval and include fluoride, a mineral that prevents and even reverses tooth decay.
The elements that should be avoided are equally essential. According to board-certified dentist Michaela Tozzi, DMD, the largest red flag on an ingredient list is alcohol, which can irritate the gums and oral tissue. Furthermore, it reduces saliva flow, which serves as the mouth’s immune system. Tozzi recommends avoiding formulations that include sulfates or sodium lauryl sulfate, both of which might cause irritation.
Dr. Harris, who created the natural dental care firm Klen Products, adds a few other chemicals to avoid. Artificial colors, as well as antibacterial chemicals like chlorhexidine, hexetidine, and triclosan, should be avoided, according to him. Another ingredient to avoid is hydrogen peroxide, which is commonly found in whitening mouthwashes. According to Field, excessive quantities might damage dental enamel or inflame gums, therefore anyone who has irritation should reduce their use.
Finally, mouthwash should never be considered the only—or even the most important—step in dental hygiene.
- Best Allrounder Mouthwash: Therabreath Fresh Breath Oral Rinse
- Best Mouthwash for Bad Breath: Oral-B Breath Therapy Mouthwash
- Best Mouthwash for Gingivitis: OxyFresh Fresh Breath Lemon Mint Mouthwash
- Best Mouthwash for Whitening: Crest 3D White Brilliance Whitening Mouthwash
- Best for Mouthwash for Receding Gums: Natural Dentist Healthy Gums Mouthwash
- Best Mouthwash for Sensitive Teeth: CloSYS Sensitive Mouthwash
- Best Mouthwash wirh Fluoride: Toms Maine Whole Natural Mouthwash
- Best Natural Mouthwash: Mouthwash by Humankind
- Best mouthwash for Plaque & Tatar: Philips Sonicare Breathrx Antibacterial Mouth Rinse
Best Allrounder Mouthwash: Therabreath Fresh Breath Oral Rinse
This ADA-approved oral rinse is used by more than 21,000 people to maintain their mouths in tip-top shape. It was created by dentists and has been clinically proved to keep breath minty fresh for up to 24 hours without using harsh chemicals like artificial color or alcohol.
Plus, because its pH-balanced composition keeps your mouth from becoming acidic, you won’t have to worry about tooth erosion, tonsil stones, or gum sensitivity after using it.
Best Mouthwash for Bad Breath: Oral-B Breath Therapy Mouthwash
It’s not just onions and garlic that cause bad breath. According to the brand’s website, when bacteria develops into plaque, it emits odorous gases such as volatile sulfur compounds, but this neutralizing solution can stop this from happening.
Rather than concealing foul breath, it utilizes sodium chlorite to destroy germs and prevent it from the source. Furthermore, it adheres to both Dr. Harris’ and Dr. Tozzi’s recommendations: There is no alcohol, artificial colors, or sodium lauryl sulfate in this product.
Best Mouthwash for Gingivitis: OxyFresh Fresh Breath Lemon Mint Mouthwash
Trey Wilson, DDS, a dentist in New York City, recently told Health that anyone suffering from gingivitis should use this all-natural mouthwash. Its composition mixes chlorine dioxide and zinc to destroy germs for up to six hours, while aloe vera and other soothing ingredients moisten the gums.
Better still, owing to the invigorating burst of citrus essential oils, even the most mint-averse taste buds won’t mind swishing it about for 60 seconds.
Best Mouthwash for Whitening: Crest 3D White Brilliance Whitening Mouthwash
This popular mouthwash uses the same whitening technology as Crest’s whitening pen, strips, and toothpaste. It’s a preference of over 4,500 customers since it’s made without alcohol or hydrogen peroxide for a daily whitening treatment that’s safe to use.
In fact, the company guarantees whiter teeth in seven days when used after brushing—or your money back.
Best for Mouthwash for Receding Gums: Natural Dentist Healthy Gums Mouthwash
Aloe vera makes up 20% of this nutritious mouthwash solution, which soothes sore or bleeding gums while simultaneously reducing plaque with its antimicrobial qualities (i.e. the cause of receding gums).
The natural recipe replaces chemicals with botanical components such as echinacea, goldenseal, and calendula, three plants that herbalists commonly employ to combat inflammation. It’s available in two flavors: orange zest and peppermint twist, and it’s free of alcohol and artificial colors, as recommended by our dental specialists.
Best Mouthwash for Sensitive Teeth: CloSYS Sensitive Mouthwash
You definitely have sensitive teeth if the notion of using mouthwash makes you shudder. Choose this non-irritating rinse developed particularly for sensitive mouths to avoid unpleasant sensations. According to the company, the ADA-approved wash eliminates 99.9% of germs in only 10 seconds and contains no alcohol.
It’s also akin to swishing water because it’s pH neutral and unflavored. If you like a delicate minty flavor, it also comes with an optional flavor enhancer—just put a drop into the bottle.
Best Mouthwash with Fluoride: Toms Maine Whole Natural Mouthwash
If you need to strengthen your teeth or minimize decay, your dentist may recommend adding more fluoride to your dental care regimen, and mouthwash is a simple method to do so. This all-natural Toms alternative is free of alcohol, artificial colors, and preservatives, although it does include a fluoride boost.
Without any dubious substances, the outcome is fresher breath and better enamel. Just be cautious while storing near four-legged companions: Xylitol, an artificial sweetener that is toxic to dogs, is present in the mix.
Best Natural Mouthwash: Mouthwash by Humankind
Unlike typical mouthwashes, this environmentally friendly option comes in the form of a tablet. But that’s not the only unusual feature: it’s made up of only seven components. The pill becomes a pH-balancing mouthwash when dissolved in warm water. Each package includes 60 pills as well as a glass cup for easy dissolving. Choose from peppermint, mint-lemon, or ginger flavors for this responsibly manufactured product.
Best Mouthwash for Plaque & Tatar: Philips Sonicare Breathrx Antibacterial Mouth Rinse
Every mouthwash that has an active antibacterial component is supposed to fight plaque, but not all of them do it as successfully as this one. “My current dentist is surprised how little plaque they needed to clean off of my teeth and how little there was between the teeth after three years since my last appointment and three years of using BreathRx (recommended by my last dentist), my current dentist is surprised how little plaque they needed to clean off of my teeth and how little there was between the teeth,” one reviewer wrote.
Cetylpyridinium chloride, a popular antibacterial component in alcohol-free mouthwashes, is the main active ingredient. To encourage fresher breath, the recipe contains the appropriate amount of antibacterial components, as well as zinc and essential oil.
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