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Common Questions on Mouthwash

With the amount of methods, practices, tools and tips for good oral hygiene, it can be difficult to choose which techniques work. The proper toothbrush will clean your teeth more efficiently while a particular flosser will remove plaque with added ease.

Some of the most common questions that we receive at Central Florida Smiles are about mouthwash and whether its use should be a priority. Although your orthodontist may consider mouthwash to be the final step in your oral hygiene routine, it still plays an essential role in your dental health.

We’ve compiled some of your questions here, in hopes that you learn more about mouthwash and why it should make a regular appearance when you clean your teeth.

What Does Mouthwash Do?

Mouthwash is a rinse that you use to cleanse your mouth after brushing and flossing your teeth. Most mouthwashes contain an antiseptic, which removes any remaining bacteria from the enamel of your teeth.

Using mouthwash is an added benefit along with brushing and flossing, especially if it contains fluoride, which strengthens the tooth enamel and prevents cavities. Anti-bacterial properties also help keep gum disease at bay and prevent bad breath.

Can You Use Mouthwash with Braces or Invisalign?

Braces can make cleaning your teeth more challenging, which is why it’s beneficial to brush and floss more frequently; however, even with increased oral hygiene, food debris can still become lodged behind braces and in other hard-to-reach places.

Leaving left-over food in your braces and on the surface of your teeth can gradually begin to break down your tooth enamel, but there is a way to prevent cavities from forming: Proper brushing, flossing and using mouthwash. Rinsing with mouthwash — particularly an anti-cavity mouthwash with fluoride — will reach the areas that brushing and flossing miss. Mouthwash can bring your oral hygiene routine full-circle and keep your teeth healthy all through treatment.

Even if you wear Invisalign, mouthwash can still be beneficial. Brushing your aligners is an important part of keeping them clean, but you can also let them soak in mouthwash for a few minutes as a safeguard against any remaining bacteria. As you allow your Invisalign retainers to soak, you can rinse your mouth as well.

What Type of Mouthwash Should You Use?

Mouthwashes come in different varieties and all claim to serve various purposes. The brand of mouthwash doesn’t necessarily matter, but it’s important to use one with specific ingredients.

Rinses that contain fluoride and anti-bacterial properties will provide the most benefits for your teeth. Most mouthwashes will state their primary ingredients on the label, making it easy to discern which one to use. Alcohol-free mouthwashes are safe and recommended for children under six years of age due to their likelihood to swallow the liquid.

If you have questions about mouthwash or about the right products to use, you can schedule an appointment with your orthodontist at Central Florida Smiles. Contact either our Longwood or Lake Mary offices today to get started