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COVID-19 update: Office is open with policy changes.

When it comes to oral hygiene, you know that brushing and flossing is essential, but what about mouthwash? According to the American Dental Association, the use of mouthwash may be a helpful addition to a daily oral hygiene routine for some people. However, not all mouthwashes are the same. While a stroll up the oral care aisle in your favorite store offers a wide variety of mouthwash choices, you still may not find one that works for you. The good news is, Soundview Family Dental shows you how making your own mouthwash at home is easy and gives you the ability to target your specific oral concerns.

 

Why Do You Need Mouthwash?

So how does mouthwash help promote good oral hygiene? Mouthwash offers the ability to reach areas of your mouth that brushing and flossing may miss. Different mouthwash ingredients target different things. For example, mouthwashes can help reduce or control plaque and gingivitis, help treat bad breath, whiten teeth, and help prevent tooth decay. Some mouthwashes also cater to people with dry mouth, sensitive teeth, or mouth sores.

Benefits of Making Your Own Mouthwash

When it comes to over-the-counter mouthwashes, ingredients differ greatly. In many cases, the ingredient label contains ingredients that are hard to pronounce and make it difficult to understand what you are really buying. In addition, many over-the-counter mouthwashes contain alcohol. Unfortunately, while alcohol-based mouthwashes may feel cleansing and refreshing, they can dry out the mucosa in your mouth, leading to dry mouth and increasing your risk of cavities. In addition, if you have restorative work, alcohol-based mouthwashes can damage composite restorations.

Making your own natural mouthwash at home allows you to target your specific dental concerns. You can use ingredients you are familiar with while leaving out ingredients that may contribute to discomfort. Making homemade mouthwash is easier than you think, and you may already have all the ingredients you need at home. These three recipes offer some examples of homemade mouthwashes that naturally boost your oral hygiene routine.

 

basic homemade mouthwash

 

Recipe #1: Basic Homemade Mouthwash

This basic recipe includes ingredients that can help reduce dental inflammation, destroy acid-forming bacteria, help balance the pH in your mouth, and surround your teeth with beneficial minerals, all while tasting great.

Ingredients

  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. xylitol (optional)
  • 8 to 10 drops of essential oils (optional)
  • 20 drops of mineral drops (optional)
  • 1 cup distilled water
  • Clean, empty bottle with lid

How to Make

To make this mouthwash, simply add all ingredients to your empty bottle and shake well until the salt and baking soda completely dissolves. With this recipe, the salt works to promote healing and reduce inflammation in the mouth, as well as help preserve your mouthwash. The baking soda helps to alkalize your mouth which leaves it less hospitable for cavity-causing bacteria.

While xylitol is an optional ingredient, the use of this sweetener is safe for your teeth and gives a more palatable flavor to your mouthwash. Adding essential oils not only flavors your mouthwash, but it also works to disrupt the bacterial cell wall and reduces the risk of plaque buildup, cavities, gingivitis, and periodontal disease. In fact, a 2004 study in the Journal of the American Dental Association showed that, in patients that routinely brushed and flossed, the use of essential oil in a mouthwash provided a clinically significant benefit in reducing plaque and gingivitis. Some good essential oils for use in mouthwash include clove, peppermint, spearmint, and tea tree. The addition of mineral drops, such as Purium Ionic Elements, helps surround the teeth with beneficial minerals often lost to acidic bacteria and plaque build-up.

How to Use

Before use, shake the bottle well to mix ingredients thoroughly. After brushing your teeth, pour a small amount into a cup and swish around your teeth for 20 to 30 seconds. Once complete, gargle for a few seconds to help clean the back of your mouth and throat. Spit mouthwash in the sink when complete.

 

aloe vera homemade mouthwash

 

Recipe #2: Aloe Vera Mouthwash

This homemade mouthwash takes advantage of the oral hygiene benefits offered by aloe vera, particularly for those with periodontal disease. In fact, a 2016 study in the Journal of Clinical and Experimental Dentistry showed that aloe vera had equal effectiveness to Chlorhexidine, a commonly used antimicrobial. Researchers determined that aloe vera is effective at curing and preventing gingivitis.

Ingredients

  • ½ cup aloe vera juice
  • ½ cup distilled water
  • 1 ½ tsp baking soda
  • 3 drops of essential oil of choice (optional)
  • Clean, empty bottle with lid

How to Make

Making this mouthwash is easy. Simply add all ingredients to your bottle, close securely with lid, and shake well until baking soda dissolves and all ingredients combine. You may add essential oils as desired to adjust the taste of your mouthwash. Because aloe vera requires refrigeration, store your mouthwash in the refrigerator between use.

How to Use

Shake your mouthwash before each use to combine ingredients. Pour a small amount into a glass. Swish the mouthwash around your teeth for 20 to 30 seconds, finishing with a short gargle to clean the back of your mouth and throat before spitting the mouthwash out. Do not swallow the mouthwash.

 

essential oil homemade mouthwash

 

Recipe #3: Essential Oil Mouthwash

As we have already explained, essential oils work well to reduce plaque and gingivitis and are a great addition to your regular oral hygiene routine. This homemade mouthwash is simple and uses only two ingredients.

Ingredients

  • 10 to 20 drops of essential oil
  • 1 cup distilled water
  • Clean bottle with lid

How to Make

Simply add the water and the desired amount of essential oil drops for flavor and shake well.

How to Use

Shake before use. After brushing your teeth, pour a small amount into a glass and swish in your mouth for 20 to 30 seconds. Gargle before spitting out to clean your tongue and throat.

 

Use Caution When Looking for Homemade Mouthwash Recipes

A simple search on Google for homemade mouthwashes will give you a variety of results. But not all mouthwash recipes are a good idea. For example, you may find recipes that include apple cider vinegar. While this powerful ingredient is great for fighting bacteria, it is also very acidic and can damage the enamel of your teeth. At Soundview Family Dental, we do not recommend this ingredient for your homemade mouthwashes. If you find a recipe and still have questions, our general dentistry specialists will be happy to go over your recipe and help you find the right mouthwash for you. Give us a call today at 425-563-360 or visit us online.

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