22 June 2017

    From time to time I am asked by a patient whether they can use salt water instead of a proprietary mouthwash as an oral disinfectant.

    Here I describe the uses and relative advantages and disadvantages of the two.

    Salt water

    Salt water mouth rinses are an excellent short term treatment when you have wounds in the mouth – for example, when you have had teeth extracted . Salt water is not only a natural disinfectant, it also reduces swelling of the tissues. It is an isotonic solution, which means that it contains the same salts and minerals as our bodies in equal concentrations. For this reason it doesn’t irritate our soft tissues and is ideal as a dental healing aid after any dental procedures. Rinsing with salt water for two to three weeks post dental surgery promotes healing, and if you have an infection or even a mouth ulcer , it works really well as a short-term measure.

    Long term, however, a salt water mouth rinse disturbs the pH balance of the oral cavity, so it would cause problems if used every day over time. While it is not necessarily abrasive, the disturbance in pH could lead to softening of tooth enamel, making your teeth more susceptible to wear and more likely to develop cavities.

    Mouthwash

    Mouthwashes are ideal for long-term everyday use as they are relatively neutral in pH so do not disturb the pH balance in the oral environment. However, it is important to note that not all mouthwashes are equal in terms of effectiveness and value when it comes to maintaining your oral hygiene.

    Mouthwashes are only indicated for certain dental needs. The only kind of mouthwash that I recommend for daily use is one that contains a low dose of fluoride, such as NeutraFlour 220. It can aid in the prevention of cavities and in children should only be used over the ages of 6.

    Certain mouthwashes may also be prescribed to stabilise gum problems. One example is Curaspet 0.05%, which also has a low dose of fluoride and chlorhexidine. It is safe to use for a longer period of time because it doesn’t result in staining of the teeth, unlike many other chlorhexidine mouth rinses.

    It is important to note that many mouthwashes that are currently available contain alcohol. You are advised to use alcohol-free mouthwashes when possible as alcohol-containing products can increase the risk of mouth or oral cancer if used long term.

    Before purchasing a mouthwash you should consult with your dentist as to which is best (if any at all) for your own personal situation. It is also important to remember that mouthwashes are not to be used solely on their own for maintaining oral hygiene . Mouthwashes are only meant to be an adjunct to brushing and flossing daily, and are most definitely not going to aid in prevention of plaque and cavities if used in isolation.

    Is mouthwash better than salt water?
    Mouthwash can be helpful to freshen your breath and cleanse areas your toothbrush can't reach. However, saltwater rinses are generally cheaper and can be equally effective in improving your oral health and hygiene, says Dr. Chris Kammer, DDS, a dental surgeon. more
    Is warm salt water better than mouthwash?
    Mouthwash vs Saltwater It ultimately boils down to what you need to use an oral rinsing solution for. Saltwater rinse is often recommended for soothing oral pain as mentioned above and it is excellent at killing bacteria because the said bacteria cannot live in salt (hence why it can be used for meat preservation). more
    Is salt water better than mouthwash?
    Mouthwash can be helpful to freshen your breath and cleanse areas your toothbrush can't reach. However, saltwater rinses are generally cheaper and can be equally effective in improving your oral health and hygiene, says Dr. Chris Kammer, DDS, a dental surgeon. more
    Is salt water or mouthwash better?
    Mouthwash can be helpful to freshen your breath and cleanse areas your toothbrush can't reach. However, saltwater rinses are generally cheaper and can be equally effective in improving your oral health and hygiene, says Dr. Chris Kammer, DDS, a dental surgeon. more
    Is salt water as good as mouthwash?
    Mouthwash can be helpful to freshen your breath and cleanse areas your toothbrush can't reach. However, saltwater rinses are generally cheaper and can be equally effective in improving your oral health and hygiene, says Dr. Chris Kammer, DDS, a dental surgeon. more
    Is salt water better than mouthwash?
    Mouthwash can be helpful to freshen your breath and cleanse areas your toothbrush can't reach. However, saltwater rinses are generally cheaper and can be equally effective in improving your oral health and hygiene, says Dr. Chris Kammer, DDS, a dental surgeon. more
    Is it OK to use salt water as a mouthwash?
    Salt water mouth rinses are an excellent short term treatment when you have wounds in the mouth – for example, when you have had teeth extracted. Salt water is not only a natural disinfectant, it also reduces swelling of the tissues. more
    Is salt water or mouthwash better?
    Mouthwash can be helpful to freshen your breath and cleanse areas your toothbrush can't reach. However, saltwater rinses are generally cheaper and can be equally effective in improving your oral health and hygiene, says Dr. Chris Kammer, DDS, a dental surgeon. more
    Is salt water rinse better than mouthwash?
    Mouthwash can be helpful to freshen your breath and cleanse areas your toothbrush can't reach. However, saltwater rinses are generally cheaper and can be equally effective in improving your oral health and hygiene, says Dr. Chris Kammer, DDS, a dental surgeon. more
    Can I use mouthwash instead of salt water after tooth extraction?
    No, it is not safe to used mouthwash after a tooth extraction because it can cause the blood clot to dislodge. The golden rule is to avoid all mouthwash for at least 24 hours after the extraction. Instead, you can swish around warm salt water in your mouth to keep things clean. more
    Is it better to gargle with salt water or mouthwash?
    Mouthwash vs Saltwater It ultimately boils down to what you need to use an oral rinsing solution for. Saltwater rinse is often recommended for soothing oral pain as mentioned above and it is excellent at killing bacteria because the said bacteria cannot live in salt (hence why it can be used for meat preservation). more

    Source: www.coredental.com.au

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