What Type of Mouthwash Is Best?

The Best Mouthwash for your Teeth, Gums, and Breath

When most people go shopping for a mouthwash, they tend to only focus on what will make their breath smell the best. However, mouthwash serves a much greater purpose — it’s the third step in your dental care routine (after brushing your teeth and flossing).

Having the right mouthwash can help protect your smile from many dental issues. Use this guide the next time you’re headed out to the store.

Choosing a Mouthwash

Mouthwashes tend to service a cosmetic or therapeutic purpose — or in some cases, both.

Cosmetic Mouthwashes

A cosmetic mouthwash will leave a pleasant taste in your mouth while hiding bad odors and reducing bad breath. These products are best if you’re primarily worried about bad breath and not preventing dental issues.

Therapeutic Mouthwashes

In contrast, a therapeutic mouthwash includes ingredients that can reduce the build-up of bacteria and can help prevent the following conditions:

  • Dry mouth
  • Gingivitis
  • Receding gums
  • Cavities
  • Plaque build-up

Therapeutic mouthwashes are sold either over-the-counter or by prescription, while cosmetic mouthwashes tend to be sold over-the-counter. With so many options on the market, here is some consideration to help you decide what to look for:

Ingredients Best for Dental Hygiene

Some ingredients in many types of mouthwash are included to treat one or more common dental health concerns. When buying a new product, it’s a good idea to check for these ingredients:

  • Fluoride: fights tooth decay and strengthens enamel.
  • Cetylpyridinium chloride: eliminates bad breath and kills bacteria.
  • Chlorhexidine: reduces plaque and controls gingivitis.
  • Essential oils: have antifungal and antibacterial properties (such as eucalyptus, peppermint, thyme)
  • Carbamide peroxide or hydrogen peroxide: whitens teeth.
ADA Seal of Approval

Check the mouthwash label for the ADA Seal of Acceptance. It means that it’s been tested for effectiveness. Not every mouthwash has it, including some with well-known names.

Recommended Brands

Now that we know what should be included in the mouthwash you use, here are some great options:

  • Crest Pro-Health Multi-Protection
  • Crest Pro-Health Advanced with Extra Whitening
  • ACT Total Care Anticavity Fluoride
  • ACT Dry Mouth
  • Colgate Total Pro-Shield
  • Listerine Cool Mint Antiseptic

Schedule Your Next Dental Cleaning Today

You may have the necessary dental tools to keep your mouth bright and while at home, but that doesn’t mean you can skip out on going to the dentist. Book your next appointment with our team by calling (972) 200-0656 or visiting us online.