Best Mouthwash for Gingivitis
You may have heard your dentist warn of gingivitis, but he or she probably didn’t go into much detail. If you notice that your gums hurt or bleed when you brush and floss or they look puffy or red, you could have early signs of gingivitis.
Gingivitis results from a buildup of bacteria and plaque on your teeth and gums. If you don’t follow an ongoing oral care routine, then you aren’t taking the initial steps to remove it. As the symptoms continue, gingivitis can progress into periodontitis, a more serious disease with long-term effects on your mouth, teeth and gums.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, half of adults age 30 and older suffer from some form of gum disease.
Brush, floss, rinse, repeat
Since many of the signs of gingivitis can go unnoticed, it’s always a good idea to stick to your oral hygiene schedule.
- Brush with fluoride toothpaste twice per day. Use a soft-bristle toothbrush to brush at every angle for at least two minutes.
- Use string floss, a dental pick or a water flosser to clean between every tooth before or after you brush.
- Rinse and gargle with an alcohol-free mouthwash
Seeing your dentist every six months is key to protecting your oral health. Any gingivitis or early gum disease symptoms can also be detected at the visit. Your dentist or dental hygienist will provide a full cleaning of your teeth, remove plaque, and let you know if you need to change your dental care techniques or start using an anti-gingivitis rinse.
Reversing the symptoms
The good news is that the beginning signs of gingivitis can be undone. It starts with maintaining your daily dental schedule and seeing your dentist for regular appointments. It’s also important for you to pay attention to your everyday habits.
Be sure to stay away from problem-causing lifestyle activities:
- Smoking and chewing tobacco
- Drinking too much alcohol
- Consuming too many sweets and sugary drinks
If you take these steps, you can prevent your early gingivitis from developing into a more progressive gum disease or risk any tooth loss.
Gingivitis professional treatment
Your dentist may suggest a chlorhexidine rinse if you need to undergo any additional procedures. It’s a medicated mouthwash for gingivitis only available by prescription. It is prescribed to help reduce the bacteria in your mouth, which leads to gum swelling, redness and bleeding. You use a specific dosage twice daily after you finish brushing and flossing, according to the labeled directions.
Although chlorhexidine rinse is an effective treatment, it can cause several side effects such as:
- Change in how foods and drinks taste
- Tooth discoloration and staining
- Mouth irritation
- Dry mouth
The clinical mouthwash maze
A quick look at the dental health store aisle can be overwhelming. There rows and rows of mouthwash varieties specifically formulated for issues such as tooth sensitivity, gum disease, cavities and the list goes on.
You have to carefully look at the labels to see how each one is different. Some offer anti- gingivitis properties, which can help protect your teeth and gums, but they may not be alcohol-free or have too strong of a taste or flavor.
So, if you want to protect your mouth from gum disease and prevent the bacteria that causes it, you’ll need to find the best mouthwash for gingivitis.
All-in-one gingivitis rinse
A recent study conducted at Saint Louis University Center for Advanced Dental Education and Southern Illinois University School of Dental Medicine compared SmartMouth Clinical DDS Advanced Formula to 0.12% chlorhexidine rinse.
The results showed that SmartMouth Clinical DDS oral rinse is an effective, over-the-counter alternative to chlorhexidine mouth rinse in reducing gingival inflammation, bleeding and plaque.
Plus SmartMouth Clinical DDS outperformed the prescription rinse with:
- No chlorhexidine staining
- Reduced taste alteration
- Better patient compliance
- Alcohol free
Dr. Douglas Miley, D.M.D., M.S.D. Professor, Graduate Program in Periodontics Saint Louis University Center for Advanced Dental Education led the research study.
“We conducted a study at two universities with patients that exhibited various levels of gum disease (gingivitis or periodontitis). Our study demonstrated that SmartMouth Clinical DDS was effective in reducing gingival (gum) inflammation, bleeding and plaque. Because of fewer side effects as compared to chlorhexidine mouthrinse, patient compliance was much better. Many patients would stop using the chlorhexidine rinse, even after a short period of time. On the other hand, patients liked the SmartMouth Clinical DDS mouthrinse. That makes it a very effective mouthrinse for either short or long term use.”
D. Douglas Miley, D.M.D., M.S.D. – Adjunct Professor, Graduate Periodontics Program – Saint Louis University Center for Advanced Dental Education; Clinical Professor, Graduate Education – Southern Illinois University School of Dental Medicine
Learn more about the study by watching the video of Dr. Miley discuss the study’s findings.
A full, peer-reviewed article about the study was published in Oral Health and Preventive Dentistry.