Should I use mouth wash too?

Many people like to use mouth wash as part of their home dental hygiene routine. It is a liquid substance that is taken into the mouth in a small amount, swilled around and then usually gargled with. It is then spat away and the mouth thoroughly rinsed.

The benefits are obvious: freshening of breath and removal of debris left behind by brushing alone. But the story of mouth wash is a little more complicated than that.

Mouth wash contains antiseptic which kills all bacteria in the mouth. Unfortunately, mouth wash is unable to discriminate between good bacteria and bad bacteria and so the good bacteria are killed too. Mouth wash leaves the mouth rather dry, so it might get rid of the bacteria that cause bad breath but it actually leaves the mouth in an ideal condition for it to come back! Bacteria find it much easier to stick to dry teeth.

If you are suffering from gum disease it might be recommended that you use a specially formulated mouth wash. But it should only be done sparingly, to avoid the above problem.

Mouth wash is available in a great variety of styles and flavours, some which colour the left over debris, allowing you see it highlighted when you rinse out your mouth. They can be purchased in most pharmacies and super markets.