How to Choose Mouthwash Based on Your Oral Health Needs

Choosing the right mouthwash can be overwhelming. Store shelves are stocked with dozens of oral rinses, and the packages host long lists of features and benefits. With so many options, it can be hard to decide which type is best for you. To narrow down potential mouthwash options, consider your current oral health needs. Here's how to choose mouthwash based on those needs.

Teeth Whitening

Stained or discolored teeth are a concern for many people. Surface stains can be caused by highly pigmented foods or drinks like coffee, wine, tomato sauce, yellow spices or berries. Smoking can also cause surface stains.

If you're concerned about surface stains on your teeth, you may want to try a whitening mouthwash, such as Colgate Optic White Whitening. This mouthwash helps remove surface stains on teeth and also forms a shield around teeth to help seal out new stains.

Breath Freshening

Bad breath can be embarrassing, and it can have many causes. Sometimes, bad breath is simply caused by eating something with a strong scent, like onions or garlic. In other cases, the odor can come from germs inside the mouth. Certain medical conditions, like acid reflux, can also cause bad breath.

For breath freshening, you may want to try Colgate Total Advanced Pro-Shield mouthwash. It freshens breath and kills 99 percent of germs on contact.

Gingivitis Prevention

Gingivitis, also called gum disease, is a common oral health concern, often caused by poor oral hygiene. When a sticky bacterial film of plaque is allowed to remain on the teeth, it hardens into tartar. Tartar can only be removed at your dentist's office, and the longer it stays on your teeth, the more it will irritate your gums. People with gingivitis may have puffy gums, receding gums or gums that bleed easily, among other symptoms.

If you're worried about gingivitis, be sure to brush your teeth twice a day and floss once a day. Your dentist may recommend adding a mouthwash like Colgate Total Mouthwash for Gum Health to your daily routine to fight plaque between teeth and along the gumline.

Dry Mouth Soothing

Dry mouth can be very uncomfortable. It occurs when your mouth doesn't produce enough saliva. This can occur for many reasons, including dehydration, smoking, or as a side effect of medications. People with chronic dry mouth may experience symptoms like difficulty speaking or difficulty chewing and swallowing. If your mouth is dry or you suffer from bad breath or mouth sores, consult with your doctor and dentist to determine a cause. Your dentist may recommend a mouthwash designed for people with dry mouth, like Colgate Hydris Dry Mouth. It relieves dry mouth for four hours, providing four hours of lasting comfort.

Children's Mouthwash

Choosing a mouthwash for your child can be just as difficult as choosing one for yourself! While children can have the same oral health concerns as adults, like bad breath, products designed for adults may not be suitable. Children may not enjoy the flavor of minty mouthwashes or the burn of alcohol, or may need help learning how to rinse safely.

For children, your dentist may recommend a kid-friendly mouthwash like Trolls Sparkle Time Bubble Fruit mouthwash. This product is available in a bubble fruit flavor and has no burn of alcohol. Not all kids need mouthwash, so be sure to ask your child's dentist before you add mouthwash to their routine.

With so many mouthwash options available, you're sure to find a product that suits your current needs. For more help with how to choose mouthwash, don't hesitate to ask your dentist.

This article is intended to promote understanding of and knowledge about general oral health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your dentist or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment.

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Choosing Mouthwashes and Mouth Rinses

Mouthwash and fluoride mouth rinse are two different products. Here are some of the differences:

  • Antibacterial mouthwashes – these mouthwashes are more effective in controlling plaque than fluoride rinses, and also freshen breath.

  • Fluoride rinses – these rinses coat the teeth with fluoride to strengthen teeth to prevent tooth decay and cavities. They also freshen breath.