If you care for your oral health, you probably have a kit of cleaning and maintenance products that’s easily available at home or while traveling. In most cases, this kit includes toothpaste, toothbrush, floss, and mouthwash (among other items), but did you know that mouthwash may not be as efficient as you think?
In fact, Listerine (which is quite a resonant name on the market of teeth care products) started as a floor cleaning solution. When this approach didn’t work, the product was remarketed as a surgical antiseptic only to be made popular as a mouthwash solution.
While mouthwash is not a product of the modern age (people in 2700 BC in China were using a saltwater rinse for gum disease), many of the current products can cause more harm than good. Therefore, today we’ll talk a bit about the modern mouthwash industry and why you should consider finding a natural mouthwash that works for you.
The Modern Products
As we mentioned already, people have used some sort of mouth rinsing solution for centuries, so the idea in itself is not new or even revolutionary. Moreover, people didn’t feel the need to invent a special product for the health of their gums since the existent, natural solutions did a great job.
The market for commercial mouthwashes only started to take shape in the early 1900 and it got a boost around the 1920s when Listerine was promoted as a cure for chronic halitosis (bad breath). While no one seemed to really care about bad breath before this ad aired, the public reacted and in about 10 years Listerine increased their sales by nearly 8000%!
Sadly, mouthwash is not the cure for halitosis, it’s just a temporary fix. Moreover, it can make people believe that a quick rinse is enough to keep good oral health and they end up skipping the brushing and flossing steps. As a result, their gums and teeth will continue to deteriorate, which may lead to infected gums and other serious health issues.
Another side effect of using modern mouthwash (that usually contains an antibacterial solution) is that it will clean out your entire oral bacterial flora. This is not really a good thing since some of the bacteria living in the oral cavity are beneficial for one’s health. As a result, if you wipe the slate clean, you also open the door for harmful bacteria that can get more aggressive now that there’s no one to keep them in check. In conclusion, too much modern mouthwash can increase the risk of infection, which can lead to other health problems.
The Best Mouthwash
When used correctly, mouthwash can help keep your breath fresh and minty. However, it’s best to choose natural products, without alcohol or strong antibacterial solutions. Luckily, there are many brands that understand the importance of good oral health, which is why you’ll also find various products based on natural ingredients. This way, you won’t have to prepare your own solution every time you brush and you can continue to enjoy the freshness of a good rinse.
Of course, it’s best to discuss the issue of the best mouthwash to use with your dentist, since they can recommend a product that’s perfectly suited for your needs. However, it is important to find a product that’s both useful and satisfying (some people like the burning sensation of an alcohol-based solution, for instance).
At the end of the day, even though it’s not a product that’s mandatory for good oral health, many people use mouthwash, so it’s best to have the right information in order to make the right decisions when it comes to your overall health.