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Can Mouthwash Kill the COVID-19 Virus?

June 25, 2020

Filed under: Uncategorized — washingtondent @ 1:46 pm
a bottle of mouthwash with a cup, toothpaste, and a toothbrush

Each morning, after you’ve finished brushing your teeth, you reach for your bottle of mouthwash and prepare to rinse. While swishing the contents in your mouth, you opt to read the label and learn that the product is designed to kill 99.99% of all germs and bacteria that can cause tooth decay, gum disease, and bad breath. Pleased with your findings, you begin to wonder, “Can it also kill the COVID-19 virus?” After all, your dentist in Bergenfield is requesting you rinse your mouth before your next appointment, so if it’s strong enough to eliminate the others, why not this one, too? Read on to learn you’re being asked to perform this task and whether it is protecting you from COVID-19.

Can Mouthwash Eliminate the COVID-19 Virus?

The short answer is “no,” it cannot eliminate COVID-19. Although dentists throughout the world would love to be able to point patients to these products as a guaranteed way to combat this virus, unfortunately, it’s not the case.

However, the good news is various types of mouthwash are antimicrobial, which means they contain a certain percentage of alcohol that is designed to kill bad bacteria. To avoid plaque and tartar accumulations, cavity formations, and bad breath, products like Listerine and other similar brands can play a pivotal role in keeping your oral and overall health in optimal condition.

How to Rinse Effectively

To ensure that you are ridding your mouth of anything that can cause problems for your smile in the future, the best way to rinse is to do the following:

  • Choose a mouthwash that contains antimicrobial properties, as this will fight off bad bacteria.
  • Actively swish it in your mouth. This will ensure it reaches even the tiniest nooks and crannies.
  • Make sure you rinse for 30-60 seconds.
  • Don’t water down your mouthwash, as this can make it less effective at killing bacteria.

Why Your Dentist is Requesting You Rinse

As part of the new and advanced safety protocols implemented by your dentist in Bergenfield, you will be asked to rinse with Perioguard before your appointment. This is an anti-viral/anti-bacterial mouthwash. Although your dental team is aware that it cannot eliminate the COVID-19 virus, it can minimize the number of bacteria in your mouth, creating a healthier environment for your dentist to work in when examining and cleaning your teeth and gums.

By joining with your dental team as an ally in this fight, you can help to keep yourself as well as those around you better protected from COVID-19.

About the Author
Dr. Mariliza LaCap has more than two decades of experience working in the oral healthcare field. Completing her Aesthetic Advantage Certification at New York University, she went on to receive her Doctor of Dental Surgery degree from Columbia University School of Dental & Oral Surgery, graduating in the top 10% of her class. At Washington Dental Associates, she and her colleagues are taking every precaution to try and avoid the possibility of contamination or transmitting harmful bacteria and viruses. To learn what you can do before your next appointment to better protect yourself and your dental team, contact us at (201) 453-4863.

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