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Mouthwash vs. Flossing: What’s the Difference?

Practice Oral Care that Works: Debating Mouthwash vs. Flossing

Do what’s best for your teeth and gums

Ask just about anyone to choose mouthwash vs. flossing and they will choose mouthwash. It’s a lot faster and easier to swish some minty liquid around your mouth rather than meticulously floss between each one of your teeth. Proper oral care, however, is about effectiveness rather than convenience, which is why it’s important to understand the difference between mouthwash vs. flossing and when it’s most appropriate to use one or the other. All the info you need to know is outlined below.

Can Mouthwash Replace Flossing?

Unfortunately, the answer is an emphatic no. Both mouthwash and flossing are important components of your oral health routine, but simply swishing your mouth out does not accomplish the same goals as flossing. That’s because flossing actually provides abrasion that works to dislodge food that is stuck in your teeth and scrape away plaque that is building up. Mouthwash can’t provide this level of abrasion and may not even penetrate the gaps in your teeth.

When to Use Mouthwash?

Using mouthwash is not as essential as brushing or flossing, but it can do a lot to support your oral health. Just be sure that you’re using a therapeutic mouth rinse that contains antimicrobial agents and fluoride. There are cosmetic products on the market to improve your breath, but therapeutic products provide the same benefit while helping you kill bacteria, soften plaque, and support tooth enamel. Use mouthwash either before or after flossing and as a quick and easy way to wash the mouth out after eating a meal or drinking something with a lots of sugar or acid.

When to Use Floss?

It is recommended that you floss at least once a day, ideally at the end of the day after you are done eating. The ADA now recommends that you use floss before brushing in order to get the biggest benefit. If you find it difficult to floss using the traditional product there are a number of alternatives available including dental tape and a waterpick. Just be aware that those products may not fully replicate the benefits of flossing. If the issue persists, consult with your dentist about other alternatives.

More is Better when it Comes to Oral Health

To reiterate – flossing is mandatory but mouthwash is recommended. In addition to your home oral care routine, you need to receive regular cleanings and checkups from a dentist in order to ensure your teeth are as healthy as possible. If you are overdue for a visit, find MyOrthodontist location nearest you, and make an apportionment at your convenience.

Keep Your Smile Healthy with the Help of MyOrthodontist

If you need to get a cavity taken care of or you are overdue for a dental checkup, rely on the team at MyOrthodontist. Find the office closest to you and make an appointment at your convenience.

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