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How Do I Choose the Best Anti-Fungal Mouthwash?

By Kristeen Moore
Updated May 21, 2024
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Anti-fungal mouthwash is used to treat a variety of causes of excess fungus and germs within your mouth. To choose the best anti-fungal mouthwash, you need to determine for what you are using it. Occasional problems are treated with mouthwash that can be purchased at drugstores, but more severe cases might require a prescription version from your doctor. Aside from using anti-fungal mouthwash, there are different steps you should take to maintain your oral health so that you do not experience recurring problems. Failure to see improvements in your mouth warrants a visit to your doctor, as this might indicate an infection or other health problem.

Candida is a naturally occurring fungus that can cause a condition called thrush when there is too much of it present in the mouth. The fungus can cause swelling in the mouth as well as painful sores. Anti-fungal mouthwash is most commonly used to treat this condition, which usually improves within a couple of weeks. These are widely available in drugstores and supermarket chains. If an over-the-counter product does not help, then you might need a prescription formula.

This type of mouthwash is also sometimes prescribed by medical professionals as a preventive measure against fungus build-up. For example, cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy are at a high risk of oral fungus development, so an oncologist might recommend such mouth rinses. Certain types are more appropriate for children, as they can be swallowed accidentally without causing poisoning. Always check the label and ask your doctor if there are any risks associated with a particular mouthwash.

Antibacterial and anti-fungal are terms that are often used interchangeably, but they are not one and the same. Bacteria naturally occur all over the body, including inside of the mouth. Some versions of mouthwashes are designed to prevent bacterial growth as a means of limiting the risk of tartar build-up on the teeth and gums. Although fungus is also naturally present within the mouth, the health implications are sometimes considered more serious, because it can eventually spread throughout the body. Specific brands of mouthwash are sometimes both anti-fungal and antibacterial.

Using mouthwash is sometimes an effective preventive measure against fungus build-up, but it should not be your only course of action. Unless you have an underlying health condition, most cases of excess fungus can be prevented through healthy oral habits. Brushing your teeth at least twice daily and regular flossing is usually enough to keep most people’s oral health in check. A doctor or dentist might recommend using an anti-fungal mouthwash regularly if you have frequent problems with fungus build-up.

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Discussion Comments
By anon992470 — On Sep 10, 2015

I need to find a holistic mouth wash containing neem oil.

By literally45 — On Aug 19, 2013

@ankara-- Regular mouthwash has anti-fungal properties, but most do have alcohol. You could always try gargling with salt water. Salt water also kills fungi.

By bear78 — On Aug 19, 2013

@ankara-- I'm sure that there are alcohol-free anti-fungal mouthwashes available. But I don't think you're going to find one over-the-counter, these are usually prescribed.

My husband was also prescribed an anti-fungal mouthwash. It was actually a "magic mouthwash." This is the type of mouthwash that the pharmacist makes for a patient depending on his or her needs. And the doctor determines the ingredients.

My husband used one which had anti-fungal medication and a pain-reliever in it. It was alcohol-free. He used it for a while after cancer treatment and it was very effective.

Why don't you ask your doctor to prescribe one for you?

By bluedolphin — On Aug 19, 2013

Does anti-fungal mouthwash have alcohol in it?

I have a sensitivity to mouthwashes with alcohol but I'm in need of an anti-fungal mouthwash.

Also, is there a natural alternative that will work like an anti-fungal mouthwash?

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