Dr. Ellie ,

When you suggest a short rinse with Listerine, how much do you suggest and
for what amount of time.  Also you suggest leaving the ACT rinse on as long
as possible.  Do you mean before you spit it out?  Also, with Essex
retainers, can we clean with Crest and dip in ACT and leave the ACT on
before it’s put in at night? 

Thank you!

Hi C,

I was just closing up for the night when your e-mail came in so I will
try and answer quickly for you!

I don’t think you need Listerine on your teeth longer than 30 seconds one
minute at the most.
Vigorous swishing between the teeth is important it’s really working as
liquid floss.

On the other hand, the act rinse is working more like a moisturizer for your
It will only be effective while it’s in contact with your teeth so you
want to give it time to soak in, so to speak.

In our house, we walk around squishing act for several minutes.
This is the real difference between the two rinses vigorous short amount
of time with the Listerine whereas a longer or relaxed soak for your
teeth with the dilute fluoride. Then spit it out two or three times and you
will be all done.

I’m not sure the best thing for your Essex retainer were you told to
clean it with toothpaste?
I think crest would be fine and then simply rinse it and put it over your
nice clean teeth.

Hope this is helpful I’ll be thinking of you doing this perhaps in a
couple hours!
Take care,


Ellie Phillips DDS
Dental Health for Everyone!
author, Kiss Your Dentist Goodbye
26, Corporate Woods, Rochester NY 14623

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