Mouthwash is supposed to kill oral bacteria that brushing leaves behind, leaving you less prone to gingivitis and cavities. Unfortunately, a lot of people simply cannot stand the strong flavor of over-the-counter mouthwashes. If you're one of them, don't give up mouthwash entirely. Instead, just make one of these homemade mouthwash alternatives to use at the end of your dental hygiene routine.
Salt has the natural antimicrobial properties. When dissolved and swished around in the mouth, it alters the mouth's pH, making it less hospitable to these organisms. It has been used since ancient times to cleanse the mouth, and it's a good alternative to modern mouthwashes if you cannot tolerate them.
Making a saltwater rinse at home is easy. Just add a large pinch of salt to a few ounces of water. Swish a mouthful around in your mouth, and spit it out. Repeat until there is no salt water remaining in the glass. Make sure you don't swallow any of the salt water, since a large amount of salt may cause vomiting.
Saltwater and Hydrogen Peroxide
Do you want to prevent tooth decay and whiten your teeth at the same time? A mixture of salt water and hydrogen peroxide is a good choice. Peroxide generally includes instructions on the label for use as a mouthwash, so you can rest assured that it is safe. Make salt water as directed above, and combine it half and half with the peroxide. Don't be surprised when it foams as you swish it around in your mouth – this means it is working.
Aloe Vera Juice
Are your gums irritated or red? Aloe vera juice makes a good mouthwash, since it has the ability to sooth irritation while also strengthening your gum tissue. You can purchase it at most health food stores. Make sure you buy a variety to which no sugar has been added. Store it in the fridge, and swish a mouthful around after every brushing session. Most people don't particularly enjoy the flavor, but it pretty mild and certainly less intense than that of conventional mouthwashes.
Rinsing your mouth out with a mild, antibacterial substance such as those discussed above can help keep your teeth and gums in good shape. If you would rather use an over-the-counter, pre-made rinse, but have not been able to find one that tastes okay, talk to your dentist. He or she may be able to prescribe a milder rinse that will improve your dental health without making you gag.