It’s important to make sure you use mouthwash correctly to get the maximum benefit.
What Is Mouthwash?
One of the main functions of mouthwash is for freshening breath, but some mouthwashes contain other helpful ingredients. These include fluoride and antibacterial agents. Using fluoride mouthwash can help protect your teeth against the acids produced by harmful bacteria. You may want to use an antibacterial mouthwash if you have a fungal infection or other gum problems.
Using Mouthwash Correctly
Make sure you read the instructions and dilute if necessary. If the label doesn’t tell you to dilute the mouthwash, be sure to use it neat to get maximum benefit. Use the right amount and swish the mouthwash around your mouth vigorously, keeping your mouth closed. The label will tell you how long to use the mouthwash, usually for 30 seconds to 1 minute before spitting it out. You should never swallow mouthwash, and if a child is using mouthwash, supervise them closely to make sure they spit it out. After using a fluoride mouthwash, avoid eating and drinking for at least half an hour afterwards to get the most benefit.
Mouthwash isn’t a replacement for brushing and flossing regularly but can complement your regular oral care routine.