Overall health isn’t possible without good oral hygiene. It affects eating, talking, and everything in between. While the ways to maintain oral health is regular brushing and flossing, mouthwashes add extra benefits. Sadly, commercial mouthwashes are full of alcohol, additives, and unwanted chemicals. And what’s up with the glowing green dye? It isn’t needed for healthy teeth!
Make your own mouthwash instead. Homemade versions are totally natural but can still fight cavities and gingivitis – two of the most common oral problems.1 You can also say goodbye to bad breath. Ready to get mixing?
7 Easy-To-Follow Mouthwash Recipes
1. Neem Mouthwash
Many natural types of mouthwash and toothpaste contain neem, a powerful anti-bacterial. Neem contains compounds called isoprenoids that fight inflammation, kill oral bacteria, and prevent germs from sticking to the teeth.2 So, neem is a must for your homemade mouthwash!
2. Tea Tree Oil Mouthwash
- Add 5 drops of tea tree oil to 2 cups of distilled water.
- Stir well.
3. Peppermint Mouthwash
Mint is no stranger to oral hygiene. The scent is so fresh, making it a classic mouthwash flavor. It’s best for fighting bad breath, so you’ll need another anti-bacterial component.
- Add 5 drops of peppermint oil to 2 cups of distilled water.
- Add 5 drops of an antibacterial oil, like tea tree or neem oil.
- Mix well.
4. Salt Mouthwash
This is as simple as it gets! Salt water is a traditional remedy for mouth sores, inflamed gums, and bad breath. Open sores might sting, so use less salt if necessary.
- Add ½ to 1 teaspoon salt to lukewarm water.
- Stir well.
- If you can’t stand the taste, add a drop of peppermint oil.
5. Turmeric Clove Mouthwash
Turmeric has anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antifungal properties. In a mouthwash, this natural remedy will shine! It works just as well as chlorhexidine, a bitter prescription mouthwash that’s linked to stained teeth. Turmeric, however, won’t have this effect.5
Clove, on the other hand, has a spicy flavor, making it the perfect partner for turmeric. The oil contains eugenol, an anti-bacterial compound. In fact, clove essential oil is a traditional remedy for oral problems like canker sores.6
- Add 5 drops of turmeric essential oil to 1 cup of distilled water.
- Add 3 drops of clove essential oil.
- Mix until combined.
6. Coconut Oil Mouthwash
In recent years, coconut oil pulling has become a trend. This practice takes advantage of coconut oil’s plaque-fighting abilities. According to the Nigerian Medical Journal, it can even fight gingivitis and harmful bacteria.7 If you’re not a fan of oil pulling, try a mouthwash instead.
- Combine ½ cup of distilled water and 1 tablespoon virgin coconut oil.
- Add 2 to 3 drops of peppermint essential oil.
- Stir until the ingredients are combined.
7. Hydrogen Peroxide Mouthwash
- Combine 1 cup of 2 percent hydrogen peroxide and 1 cup of distilled water.
- Mix well.
How To Use
Put a tablespoon of mouthwash in your mouth. To prevent cross-contamination, use a separate spoon or small cup. Swish around for 20 to 30 seconds then spit out. Never swallow mouthwash.
Directions For Storage
Proper storage will make your mouthwash last. Keep it in an amber or cobalt glass bottle, which will protect it from UV rays. Close tightly when not in use and store in a cool and dark area.
Mouthwash should never be swallowed. It doesn’t matter if it was store-bought or homemade. If you have kids, don’t let them use mouthwash unless they know how to spit it out.
|↑1||Dental Hygiene. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.|
|↑2||Tadikonda, Abhinav, Kalyana-Chakravarthy Pentapati, Arun-Sreenivas Urala, and Shashidhar Acharya. “Anti-plaque and anti-gingivitis effect of Papain, Bromelain, Miswak and Neem containing dentifrice: A randomized controlled trial.” Journal of clinical and experimental dentistry 9, no. 5 (2017): e649.|
|↑3||Wiatrak, Karolina, Tadeusz Morawiec, Rafał Rój, Anna Mertas, Agnieszka Machorowska-Pieniążek, Patryk Kownacki, Marta Tanasiewicz et al. “Oral Health of Patients Treated with Acrylic Partial Dentures Using a Toothpaste Containing Bee Product.” Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine 2017 (2017).|
|↑4||Carson, C. F., K. A. Hammer, and T. V. Riley. “Melaleuca alternifolia (tea tree) oil: a review of antimicrobial and other medicinal properties.” Clinical microbiology reviews 19, no. 1 (2006): 50-62.|
|↑5||Stoyell, Karissa A., Jennifer L. Mappus, and Mona A. Gandhi. “Clinical efficacy of turmeric use in gingivitis: A comprehensive review.” Complementary therapies in clinical practice 25 (2016): 13-17.|
|↑6||Marchese, Anna, Ramona Barbieri, Erika Coppo, Ilkay Erdogan Orhan, Maria Daglia, Seyed Fazel Nabavi, Morteza Izadi, Mohammad Abdollahi, Seyed Mohammad Nabavi, and Marjan Ajami. “Antimicrobial activity of eugenol and essential oils containing eugenol: A mechanistic viewpoint.” Critical Reviews in Microbiology (2017): 1-22.|
|↑7||Peedikayil, Faizal C., Prathima Sreenivasan, and Arun Narayanan. “Effect of coconut oil in plaque related gingivitis—A preliminary report.” Nigerian medical journal: journal of the Nigeria Medical Association 56, no. 2 (2015): 143.|
|↑8||Jhingta, Pravesh, Ashu Bhardwaj, Deepak Sharma, Naresh Kumar, Vinay Kumar Bhardwaj, and Sanjeev Vaid. “Effect of hydrogen peroxide mouthwash as an adjunct to chlorhexidine on stains and plaque.” Journal of Indian Society of Periodontology 17, no. 4 (2013): 449.|
|↑9||Keke, Z., Z. Xuedong, and X. Xin. “The origin of hydrogen peroxide in oral cavity and its role in oral microecology balance.” Hua xi kou qiang yi xue za zhi= Huaxi kouqiang yixue zazhi= West China journal of stomatology 35, no. 2 (2017): 215.|