General Dentistry Question: Should I Use Mouthwash That Has Alcohol?

Posted on: March 1, 2020

general dentistry West Covina, CA

When it comes to general dentistry, it is recommended that you use mouthwash as part of your daily oral hygiene regimen because it kills the germs left in your mouth after brushing. Most adults use a mouthwash that contains alcohol because they believe it kills germs more effectively than alcohol-free mouthwash.

In an effort to figure out which type of mouthwash is the most effective, we will take a look at the advantages and disadvantages of alcohol-free mouthwash and mouthwash that contains alcohol to answer the question once and for all.

Should I use a mouthwash that has alcohol?

Mouthwash that contains alcohol is popular in general dentistry because it kills most of the bacteria in your mouth and leaves your mouth feeling refreshed. However, your mouth needs both good and bad bacteria to even out your breath, so there is a possibility that the imbalance in the bacteria in your mouth can lead to bad breath.

If you have a low flow of saliva because of a medical condition or suffer from diabetes, you should avoid using a mouthwash that contains alcohol, to prevent your condition from getting worse. If you have a history of alcohol abuse, you should use alcohol-free mouthwash instead.

Which mouthwash is more effective at killing germs?

Technically, the right answer to this question is mouthwash that contains alcohol, but the reality is that alcohol-free mouthwash tends to do a better job. The general dentistry belief that alcohol-free mouthwash is more effective is because the most effective way to get rid of the bacteria in your mouth is to swish the mouthwash in your mouth long enough to kill the bacteria.

Most people who use a mouthwash that contains alcohol do not rinse their mouths out properly because the burning sensation from the alcohol makes them spit the mouthwash out prematurely. People who use alcohol-free mouthwash do not have to worry about the burning sensation and rinse their mouth for longer periods, allowing the mouthwash to properly do its job.

Can mouthwash that contains alcohol really lead to cancer?

No. There have been rumors about studies that found a link between mouthwash that contains alcohol and cancer, but there is no credible evidence. The 2014 research that has been used to further this claim concluded that the link between frequent use of mouthwash and oral cancer is not fully clarified.

Which mouthwash is safer for your teeth?

Alcohol-free mouthwash is considered to be safer for your teeth because you do not have to worry about your enamel being weakened by the alcohol in your mouthwash or your gums burning while you rinse.

When it comes to general dentistry, the type of mouthwash you use should depend on your needs. If you have sensitive teeth, avoid using a mouthwash that contains alcohol. If you have strong teeth and healthy gums and don't mind the burning sensation when you rinse your mouth, go with the mouthwash that contains alcohol.

Conclusion

Using mouthwash regularly helps reduce the number of bacteria in your mouth and strengthen your teeth. If you need help figuring out which type of mouthwash to use, ask your dentist to recommend one for you.

Request an appointment here: https://www.mywestcovinadentist.com or call American Dental Group at (626) 779-1143 for an appointment in our West Covina office.

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