Mouthwashes and fluoride mouth rinses | Dental Treatment Guide

Mouthwashes and fluoride mouth rinses are two oral hygiene products that although similar in appearance, produce different results.

Mouthwashes freshen the breath and should be used after you have brushed your teeth as they do not actually clean the teeth. Alcohol is a common ingredient in mouthwashes which means that you need to be careful to ensure that you spit out the residue and do not give mouthwash to young children. If this concern then it is possible to purchase alcohol free mouthwashes. If you or your child has persistently bad breath that it is not alleviated by mouthwash then it would be recommended that you visit your dentist. It is possible that chronic bad breath can be caused an oral health problem that mouthwash cannot treat.

In contrast fluoride mouth rinses form a layer of fluoride over the teeth which works to prevent the development of cavities in teeth. This is an important product for children as it can help preserve the teeth that they might be missing when brushing. It is recommended that you check with your dentist before using a fluoride mouth rinse for your child as they will be able to give a better opinion of whether it is a suitable product for them, considering their age and dental health. Some children are inclined to have a tendency towards developing cavities so it would be appropriate to use a fluoride mouth rinse on them up to two times a day. Fluoride mouth rinse is suitable from around the age of 7 but it is important that children realise that they are meant to spit out the liquid and not swallow it. If you are unsure as to whether your child understands this then it might be advised to practise the routine using water then switch onto fluoride mouth rinse.

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