The dental industry continues to suffer from a heavy load of dental complications despite the flood of oral health products. Bad breath, also known as halitosis, is one of the most common problems dentists encounter every day. The main triggers of bad breath must be pinpointed in order for floss or mouthwash to help improve the condition.

The most important takeaways

Bad breath can be caused by a variety of factors

It is only dangerous if bad breath is accompanied by other symptoms

Use mouthwash to combat bad breath

Choosing the right mouthwash for bad breath is crucial

The causes of bad breath and mouthwash

Bad breath is caused by odor-producing bacteria that grow in the mouth, which metabolize food particles left in the mouth to produce sulfur compounds that cause bad breath, tooth decay, and other problems.

Bad breath can also be caused by any of these conditions:

Mouth feeling dry

Mouth bacteria growth

A sinus infection or throat infection (gingivitis, tonsillitis, or pharyngitis)

Oral hygiene is poor

Deficiencies in vitamins and minerals

Cavities in the teeth or gum disease

Consumption of spicy foods or alcohol

Taking up smoking

Dietary deficiencies

Postnasal drip, nasal allergies, and sinus infections

Some antidepressants, antibiotics, and diuretics

What are the dangers of Halitosis (Bad Breath)?

If bad breath does not go away after brushing your teeth or flossing, consult a qualified dentist.

Weight loss, fever, and fatigue could be signs of diabetes or cancer if the condition exhibits other symptoms. The presence of bad breath can also indicate periodontal disease, a buildup of plaque in the mouth that can result in tooth loss if left untreated.

In summary, halitosis can negatively affect your quality of life and affect how others perceive you. It can especially be embarrassing when you are mingling with others in social situations.

As a consequence, people with halitosis are considered unhygienic by the public. Bad breath can also indicate other health conditions that require medical attention, such as:

The cancerous tumor

Ketones caused by diabetes can cause a sweet taste in your mouth

The odor of a foul, musty odor may be caused by kidney disease

A metallic or ammonia-like odor can be caused by liver disease

A fruity odor is caused by pancreatitis

There is a foul odor associated with strep throat

Your mouth will taste bad and smell foul when you have a throat infection

How Does Alcohol-Free Mouthwash Freshen Breath?

You should also be aware that some mouthwash contains alcohol, which dries out your mouth and worsens bad breath. You should choose alcohol-free mouthwash if you want fresh breath.

Besides increasing saliva production, a zero alcohol mouthwash aids in washing out harmful bacteria. Listerine’s antibacterial mouthwash with cool mint is even more effective due to its antiseptic properties.

Cool mint mouthwash helps fight bad breath and gingivitis in areas where brushing and flossing can’t reach.

Is it better to use mouthwash before or after brushing your teeth?

The National Health Service suggests that adults and children above 12 avoid using mouthwash immediately after brushing.

As opposed to the Mayo Clinic dentists, who recommend mouthwash after flossing and brushing, other experts recommend rinsing your mouth with a mouthwash before brushing. Also, rinse your mouth with mouthwash after brushing, but make sure you rinse the toothpaste completely before swishing.

After brushing with fluoride toothpaste, wait 30 minutes before using mouthwash to ensure that fluoride does not deactivate the active ingredient.

How do I choose the best mouthwash for bad breath?

There are several types of mouthwash available, but some are better at treating bad breath than others. You should avoid alcohol-based mouthwashes if you have receding gums or canker sores. They can cause your mouth to dry out and irritate your sensitive gums and teeth, which can worsen the symptoms.

Use a nonalcoholic solution that helps kill bacteria that cause bad breath, such as chlorhexidine gluconate or cetylpyridinium chloride (CPC).

With peppermint alcohol-free mouthwash, you can enjoy a cool, refreshing experience that leaves your breath smelling fresh and gives you confidence.

It is unknown to most people that chlorine dioxide neutralizes bacterial activity around the teeth and tongue when used at low concentrations.

You can find mouthwashes with menthol as an active ingredient if you are wary of chlorine dioxide. Listerine’s original mouthwash, for instance, contains 0.64% thyme/thymol, 0.0042% mint/menthol, 0.092% eucalyptus and 0.06% wintergreen/methyl salicylate as ingredients. Your breath will be fresher and your tongue and entire oral tissues will feel cleaner if you rinse with menthol every day.

You can go a long way in preventing halitosis by combining a dentist checkup (after every six months) with Listerine rinsings every day.

Choosing the Best Mouthwash

When choosing mouthwashes, consider the following factors:


When shopping for mouthwashes, check the ingredients. It could be zinc gluconate, quaternary ammonium, or cetylpyridinium chloride. Listerine uses menthol, fluoride, and various essential oils.

Level of pH

On a scale of 0–14, this number indicates how acidic or alkaline a product is. Anything above 7 is considered neutral. The pH level of Listerine mouthwashes varies from product to product. Ideally, they should have an acidic pH level between 2 and 6 to prevent eroding tooth enamel after brushing your teeth. Overall, they range from 3.3 to 4.3.

Alcohol content

Many people avoid alcohol-free mouthwashes, but others claim their effectiveness in maintaining healthy dental hygiene is debatable. Famous mints and fluoride mouthwashes contain approximately 22 percent alcohol. With a alcohol content of 26.9%, Listerine is the highest.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is mouthwash capable of giving a positive alcohol test?

Ingestion of excess ethanol can result in intoxication or a positive alcohol test. However, the residue dissipates very quickly and within 15 minutes.

Taste buds can be damaged by mouthwash?

Using mouthwashes too frequently can lead to oral dysbacteriosis and impaired taste.

Is it possible to use mouthwash for purposes other than oral hygiene?

You can use mouthwash to keep flowers alive, treat dandruff, and clean sinks.

How well do mouthwashes penetrate the gums?

Generally, dental hygiene products do not penetrate the root, only cleaning the germs and plague.