We may be using mouthwash all wrong, according to this dentist’s viral video

Apparently, doing it the most common way may be damaging our teeth

bottle of mouthwash on blue background
(Image credit: Getty Images)

TikTok is awash with brilliant life hacks but a recent video featuring a dentist seriously shocked us.

Mouth health has been the topic of much debate this past year due to missed appointments because of the COVID-19 pandemic. According to dentists, there's been a rise in cracked and chipped teeth and many of us have suffered with tongue pain. But one thing is for sure, maintaining healthy oral hygiene is essential. 

While some of us prefer to use a mouthwash rather than a teeth whitening procedures to achieve pearly white teeth, London-based dentist Dr. Anna Peterson advises that we should be using it before we brush our teeth—not after.

In a series of three videos, which have garnered over 2-million views and counting, she explains the effects of using mouthwash after you brush your teeth.


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Too many people are still doing it 🦷#GetGrafting #dentistry #fyp #lgbtq #lifestylechangestartsnow

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 “Using mouthwash after brushing your teeth is going to give you tooth decay, so stop doing it," she says in the first video. Part two of the series goes into further detail on just exactly how doing so negatively affects our teeth, which largely has to do with the amount of fluoride in toothpaste compared to most mouthwashes.

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The explanation you all asked for 🦷#GetGrafting #dentistry #lgbtq #lifestylechangestartsnow #fyp

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"Your toothpaste that you brush your teeth with has around 1450pp fluoride...[and] your mouthwash has only 220pp fluoride. This is a much lower concentration and it’s not enough to protect your teeth from sugars that you eat and drink. So when you brush your teeth, and you rinse with mouthwash straight away—you just rinse off all the high concentration fluoride, for a low concentration fluoride," she explains.

Fluoride, according to Dr. Peterson, is important “in contributing to your teeth's defense against tooth decay," and though not all toothpaste and mouthwash are created equally, “toothpastes typically [have] a greater concentration of fluoride. Which is why it would be ideal to use mouthwash prior to tooth brushing or at a different time.”

Rylee Johnston
Rylee Johnston

Rylee is a U.S. news writer who previously worked for woman&home and My Imperfect Life covering lifestyle, celebrity, and fashion news. Before joining woman&home and My Imperfect Life, Rylee studied journalism at Hofstra University where she explored her interests in world politics and magazine writing. From there, she dabbled in freelance writing covering fashion and beauty e-commerce for outlets such as the TODAY show, American Spa Magazine, First for Women, and Woman’s World.