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Many use mouthwash, or mouth rinses, as part of their oral hygiene routine. But how much do you know about this rinsing agent, other than the fact that it comes in lots of colors? Check out these six mouthwash myths and see how your rinse know-how compares—and make sure to brush up on what your dentist wishes you would do with your teeth.
Myth 1: All mouthwashes are made equal
“The benefits from using a mouthwash depend largely on the type of product used,” says Dr. Euan Swan, manager of dental programs at the Canadian Dental Association in Ottawa. Mouthwash can be classified as cosmetic or therapeutic. Rinsing with a cosmetic mouthwash will loosen bits of food from your teeth, lessen bacteria in your mouth, temporarily reduce bad breath and leave a refreshing taste in your mouth. But these products can’t make any greater claim than that.
Therapeutic rinses contain additional active ingredients such as essential oils, chlorhexidine, cetylpyridinium chloride and fluoride, which have been proven to reduce plaque or fight cavities. They may have a seal of recognition from the Canadian Dental Association. Want to ensure you have a healthy smile? Check out these oral hygiene tips you should be following.