Mouthwash and Diabetes

Mouthwashes are used to kill bacteria and provide fresher breath.

A study published in the scientific journal Nitric Oxide suggests that people with a high risk of type 2 diabetes and who use mouthwash twice a day are 55% more likely to be diagnosed with diabetes within three years. Does this mean that our Yuba City dental patients should stop using mouthwash? Not necessarily, but the study does suggests that persons at risk for diabetes — those who are overweight, mostly sedentary and who eat mainly a “Western diet” high in meat and dairy products — are less protected against type 2 diabetes when using mouthwash. Apparently, mouthwash rinses away certain “good” bacteria along with the “bad” bacteria.

What Are “Good” Bacteria?

Specifically, the bacteria in question help the body to create nitric oxide, a molecule that, among other things, regulates healthy insulin levels. The study also made the connection that persons with poor health are more likely to use mouthwash. This is a good reminder for all of us that using mouthwash without brushing and flossing does not prevent disease! Additionally, if you do use mouthwash, using it only once a day does not increase your risk for diabetes.

It is each person’s decision whether or not to use over-the-counter mouthwash, but many find that when they maintain their dental health with brushing, flossing and a diet low in refined sugar, cholesterol and saturated fat, they do not need to use mouthwash on a regular basis.

For even better oral health, be sure to keep your appointments with the Yuba City Dentistry Group! Preventive dental care is vital to enjoying teeth free of complications. To start on the road of worry-free dental care, contact our Yuba City dental clinic today to schedule an exam and cleaning.

Yuba City Dentistry
ernst@gfxservices.com
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