Our overall health and wellbeing depend on maintaining excellent oral health. Despite the
fact that mouthwashes are frequently used to enhance dental hygiene, a meta-analysis
released in 2019 contends that some mouthwashes may have detrimental effects on oral
nitric oxide (NO) levels, which are crucial for preserving both oral and systemic health.
The body naturally produces the molecule nitric oxide, which is essential for controlling
blood flow, immunological response, and inflammation. NO has been demonstrated to
aid in wound healing and bacterial infection prevention in the mouth. Gum disease, heart
disease, and diabetes are just a few of the dental and systemic health issues that have
been connected to an imbalance in oral NO levels.
The meta-analysis examined 12 randomized controlled trials that included 231 people
and used a variety of mouthwashes, including those containing essential oils, hydrogen
peroxide, cetylpyridinium chloride, and chlorhexidine. The findings demonstrated that
using mouthwash significantly reduced salivary NO levels, with chlorhexidine-based
mouthwash having the greatest effect. The quantity and frequency of mouthwash use
were found to be directly correlated with the decrease in oral NO levels.
The mouthwashes’ reduction of oral NO levels may have adverse impacts on both oral
and systemic health. To sustain ideal systemic health, a healthy balance of NO must be
maintained. NO is essential for controlling blood flow throughout the body, which
supports good blood pressure maintenance and wards off cardiovascular diseases. It also
has anti-inflammatory properties naturally, which are crucial for lowering inflammatory
levels in the body and avoiding chronic illnesses.
For optimum oral and systemic health, the research emphasizes the significance of
maintaining a healthy balance of NO. Mouthwashes can help reduce the bacteria that cause bad odor and gum disease, however it is advised to only use them as instructed and
under a dentist’s supervision. We can take action to maintain a healthy oral microbiome
and support systemic health by making educated choices about nutrition and oral care
Before using any mouthwash or oral care products, it is imperative to speak with a dental
expert to discuss the potential effects on oral and overall health. We can move closer to
ideal oral and systemic health by keeping optimal NO levels.