How to use mouthwash

How to use mouthwash is a question we get a lot! We always advise that you follow the instructions on the packaging of any mouthwash you chose to use but we thought we would detail our beliefs in terms of how to use mouthwash and the things you may want to consider before making up your mind.

how to use mouthwash


How to use a mouthwash will be different from product to product. We always advise that you follow the instructions on the packaging of any mouthwash you chose to use.

However, below we have detailed a simple step by step guide with tips on how to use most types of mouthwash.

  1. Brush your teeth first
    • Begin by brushing your teeth with fluoride toothpaste and flossing your teeth too
    • Don’t rinse your mouth out with water or mouthwash straight after brushing your teeth.
  2. How much mouthwash to use
    • Rinse with a fluoride-based mouthwash for cavity protection.
    • Pour the amount of mouthwash as directed by the packaging into a mouthwash cup (typically about 20ml), ideally use a reusable mouthwash cup to help with environmental sustainability
  3. Rinse your mouth with mouthwash
    • Pour the mouthwash from the cup into your mouth but please don’t swallow it as it is not for drinking.
    • Swish and gargle the mouthwash in your mouth. Try to make mouthwash come into contact with all parts of your mouth to deliver complete care.
    • Rinse, swish and gargle for up to 30 seconds. Set a timer or you can count to 30 in your head.
  4. Spit the mouthwash out
    • Expel the mouthwash into the sink and feel confident in your recently freshened breath!
  5. Repeat
    • Repeat steps 1 to 4 at least twice a day. Mouthwash can be used more frequently than twice a day such as after meal times or at times of the day when you feel you could benefit from fresher breath and other dentalcare related benefits.

If you're using a fluoride-based mouthwash – we highly recommend that you do for added cavity protection) you should wait a while (perhaps 5 minutes or so) before using a mouthwash.

This is because the mouthwash – even one with fluoride in can dilute the concentrated fluoride in your toothpaste and make it less effective.

have you ever wondered


Mouthwash has been a part of so many of our lives for so long we have probably never truly taken the time to ask, what is mouthwash?

Mouthwash or mouth rinse is normally a liquid based product that is swished, gargled and moved around the mouth then expelled in order to freshen breath and contribute to your oral care and/or dental care.

Mouthwash forms part of a regular and important oral care / dental care routine but should not replace it. Mouthwashes may have many different types of ingredients that have specific benefits to help with the type of oral care or dental care you need. Some mouthwashes can help to protect teeth against acids made by bacteria that damage teeth, help promote healthy gums, help clear fungal infections and more.

Some of the most effective mouthwashes contain fluoride or sodium fluoride to help protect teeth against cavities. You may also suffer from halitosis (chronic bad breath) at which point you should talk to your dentist about other ways to address your challenge around bad breath.

answering the question


Well this ultimately depends on the type of mouthwash that you use. All mouthwashes work by coming into contact with your mouth, teeth and gums through rinsing, swishing and gargling before being expelled. Some freshen breath, some fluoride mouthwashes contain ingredients such as sodium fluoride that help protect teeth against cavities- some of the best mouthwashes do both. Some may kill bacteria in the mouth to prevent plaque building up on teeth and so on.

So there are many options for you to choose from, the best mouthwashes often have multiple benefits. To help you, below are some key questions you may want to ponder over before making your final decision:

What flavour of mouthwash is best for bad breath?

Why not try different ones! Most mouthwashes will help to freshen breath. Look out for mouthwashes that contain natural mint, such as natural peppermint or natural spearmint. There are also some brands who do delicious ranges of naturally flavoured mouthwash where mint is blended with other natural ingredients to create:

Should I use a mouthwash with fluoride?

Absolutely! Fluoride is an ingredient that comes in many forms in dental care product. One of the most popular forms of fluoride is sodium fluoride. Fluoride mouthwashes make contact with the surfaces in your mouth such as your teeth. Fluoride can help remineralise your teeth, replacing lost materials that your teeth are made out of, thus making your teeth stronger and more resistant to cavities (holes in your teeth).

Should I use an alcohol-free mouthwash?

Yes. We absolutely believe that alcohol-free mouthwashes are amongst the best mouthwashes. This is because alcohol-free mouthwashes are often milder to use in your delicate mouth. Many mouthwash products use alcohol and it can contribute to the harsh, overwhelming feeling of burning.

Should I use mouthwash if I have sensitive teeth?

Many of us unfortunately report that we have sensitive teeth and/or sensitivity in other parts of our mouth. This can be unpleasant if you use alcohol-based mouthwashes that can contribute to a painful sensation in your mouth when used.

Look out for alcohol-free mouthwashes and mouthwashes that are blended with natural ingredients such as natural mint an avoid using unnecessarily harsh chemicals.

A tip for avoiding unnecessary ingredients is to look out for mouthwashes whose liquids are colourless and avoid mouthwashes with bright fluorescent colours such as purple, green, blue, pink and so on. These colours normally suggest that artificial colours or artificial dyes have been used to colour the liquid which in our view is unnatural and entirely unnecessary.

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