The 3 Best Mouthwashes For Braces

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If you have braces, you're probably all too familiar with the unique set of dental hygiene issues they bring. From stray food particles getting caught in them to the fear of developing white marks on your teeth underneath them, there are more than a few reasons to get serious about your daily oral care routine. But, when it comes to finding the best mouthwash for braces, all rinses are not created equal. Ahead, you'll find three mouthwashes that are effective at tackling the orthodontic patient's particular woes.

First and foremost, the active ingredient you want to see on the back of the bottle is fluoride — sodium fluoride to be exact. It can help limit the tooth decalcification brought about by plaque and sugars from lingering food debris. It's that decalcification that can cause the white spots under braces. What's more, fluoride wards off cavities by remineralizing and strengthening tooth enamel.

Even though fluoride has been scrutinized in recent years, the American Dental Association (ADA) approves it, and in fact, requires that it be included in toothpastes in order to receive the ADA Seal of Acceptance. That said, the amount of fluoride in the mouthwashes below varies, so you can choose one that best meets your needs and comfort level.

In addition to fluoride, the best mouthwashes for braces are ADA-certified. That's because the ADA Seal of Acceptance is considered the gold standard for both dentists and consumers and signifies that the product has met safety and efficacy requirements.

With all that in mind it's time to find the best mouthwash for you. All come highly rated on Amazon and some come in convenient two-packs to save you a trip to the store.

1. The Best Overall

Colgate Phos-Flur Fluoride Rinse is an ADA-accepted mouthwash specially formulated for orthodontic patients. It's alcohol-free so you don't have that "burning mouth" sensation, and it includes 0.044 percent sodium fluoride as an active ingredient for cavity protection. The advanced fluoride formula is regularly recommended by orthodontists, and is clinically proven to reduce the appearance of white spots from braces. Plus, the phosphate in it works to help build strong teeth.

Fans say: "This product came highly recommended by my son's orthodontist when he had braces put on last year. It's extremely hard to find in stores, so I turned to Amazon. He loves the flavor, and uses it daily. So far, so good, as we've not had staining issues with his braces, and I'm expecting to find his teeth just as white under the brackets when they come off next June."

2. The Best For Fighting Cavities

This ACT Anticavity Fluoride Rinse contains 0.05 percent sodium fluoride — the maximum amount of fluoride available in rinse form without a prescription — which means it's a heavy hitter in terms of preventing cavities and tooth decay. Yet, the alcohol-free formula has a mild flavor. Amazon reviewers give it an impressive 4.5-star rating and it also boasts the all-important ADA Seal of Acceptance.

Fans say: "I'm using this on the advice of my Dentist! Love the measured dosing!"

3. The Best On A Budget

With this hefty 1-liter bottle of Listerine Total Care Anticavity Mouthwash, you get a lot of bang for your buck. The six-in-one formula works to clean the mouth, kill germs, strengthen teeth, help prevent cavities, freshen breath, and restore enamel. As the only option on this list that contains alcohol, it's the least "gentle" in terms of how it feels in the mouth, but it also contains the least amount of sodium fluoride (0.02 percent) compared to the others on this list — which may be a good thing if you're hesitant about the ingredient. Backed by the ADA and boasting a high Amazon rating (4.5-stars after more than 400 reviews), this is a solid choice for anyone who wants a mouthwash that's going to go the distance: The bottle promises to last for approximately seven weeks.

Fans say: "My son wears braces, and I researched some tips on how to take care of his mouth. This listerine was recommended, and after using it for several months, we’re very satisfied with the results."

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