Are you doing everything you can to keep your teeth and gums in good condition? Do you think that merely brushing your teeth daily and occasionally flossing will do the job for you?
Many among us are outright careless when it comes to dental care. For instance, if someone brushes their teeth in the morning, they end up not doing so at night even after eating all kinds of desserts to provide a safe haven for bacteria to thrive upon.
Oh, and flossing sounds like a misnomer that is so very boringly tedious so who has the time to do that every single day? And those who claim that mouthwash is an integral component of oral hygiene don’t realize that most of them contain the ever-harmful alcohol and burn your mouth like hell.
Moral of the story? Brush your teeth twice a day, occasionally and be happy with your annual visits to dentists. Wow, sounds like a foolproof plan, doesn’t it? But there is just one problem here: It just doesn’t work and is actually a recipe for disaster!
This is because your daily habits become weekly habits (and finally yearly habits) and before you know, you embroil yourself into a vicious cycle that is hard to mentally dissociate from.
It takes nothing short of an emergency visit to the nearby dentist to let you know that your acts of gross negligence have had a disastrous impact on your teeth and gums and produce canker sores in mouth. The end result is usually pretty painful in the form of countless rounds of fillings and root canals.
Does that sound like you? If yes, then do know that merely brushing your teeth twice (yes and not just once!) and flossing them regularly might not be enough to protect your gums. There is another cog in the wheel which must be fitted properly- mouthwash!
Use Mouthwash for Healthy Gums
One of the most underrated components of oral care is mouthwash, which is generally labeled as a fancy liquid to prevent bad breath.
Mouthwash’s role in maintaining good gum health is very important because our teeth comprises of just 25% of our mouth, which also includes tongue, palate, the area adjoining your throat and finally, gums.
Brushing merely covers your teeth and doesn’t encompass the remaining portions, which leaves you susceptible to plaque and bacteria growth. This is where a good mouthwash comes in.
Mouthwashes are of two types: Cosmetic and Therapeutic.
While non fluoride toothpaste and (cosmetic) mouthwash can temporarily help you loosen food particles and prevent bad breath, you need a therapeutic mouthwash containing ingredients like chlorhexidine, essential oils and fluoride to prevent gum decay.
Things to look for in a mouthwash
Before buying a mouthwash, look for these:
- Hydrogen peroxide
- Carboxymethylcellulose to stimulate salvia production
- Chlorhexidinegluconate for bacteria prevention
Regardless of the controversies surrounding the efficacy of fluoride and non-alcohol mouthwashes, safe use hydrogen peroxide mouthwash daily is an all natural homemade mouthwash and as natural teeth whitening.
Due to its intrinsic antimicrobial and tooth-whitening properties, hydrogen peroxide makes for a great pre-brushing rinsing ritual. Mix a little quantity of it with a few drops of water and wait until some foam emerges. Finally, rinse off properly and top it off with a brushing session. A good alternative to this is Biotene mouthwash for bad breath
How to Use Listerine Mouthwash
Remember your growing years when the word ‘Listerine’ was practically synonymous with mouthwash? But what you probably don’t know is that your grandfather might say the same; it’s been around since 1879!
Yes, the very term Listerine used to be the brand when it came to using a mouthwash, however, its reputation and efficacy has come under the scanner lately because of two factors:
- Mouth burning properties
- Potential cancer-causing alcohol
All the ambiguities notwithstanding, Listerine is still a great mouthwash because it contains useful bacteria fighting ingredients like eucalyptol, thymol, methyl salicilate and also menthol. The mere absence of cetylpyridinium chloride shouldn’t be a good enough deterrent against using it.
How to use it?
The best part about using Listerine is that it can be used like any other mouthwash. If you find it difficult to use it undiluted (the burning sensation indicates that it’s killing the bacteria), mix it in water in the ratio of 50:50. Leave on in your mouth for a few minutes, gargle properly, and rinse off! Before you know it, you’re done!