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Mouthwashes and Rinses

To improve oral health standards, many people will look to mouthwashes and rinses in addition to regular brushing and flossing, but what do they actually do?

What a mouthwash won’t do is replace the need for regular and consistent flossing. There is no easy way out of flossing, unfortunately. There a variety of different mouthwashes with different marketed benefits.

Saliva is your body’s natural mouth rinse and so, a good mouthwash will compliment your saliva’s natural properties. Things to look out for in a good mouth wash or rinse:

Fresh breath

For fresher breath, most mouthwashes will cater for this, just be sure that they are alcohol-free and preferably with fluoride additives.


Alcohol dries the mouth and prevents healthy saliva flow. Regular exposure to alcohol has also been linked to oral cancers. For these reasons, if you do opt to use a mouthwash, make sure it is alcohol-free.


Generally, fluoride in toothpaste has a higher concentration than that in a mouthwash but if you want the added benefits, check the content of fluoride in your mouthwash.

Anti-bacterial properties

These will only be found in therapeutic mouth rinses that have chlorhexidine as an active ingredient (e.g. Savacol or Curasept mouth rinses). These kill 100% of bacteria in a person’s mouth. Prolonged exposure to chlorhexidine can lead to staining though and so, this type of mouthwash is only recommended for short periods as required.

Healing after an extraction

Simple salt water can assist in the healing of the gums after extractions.

If you are unsure of what mouthwash or rinse to use or if it doing you any good, see your Sensational Smiles dental professional for catered advice to your needs.