How Long? – Mouthrinses

Dr. Ellie,

How long should we rinse with Closys, Listerine and Act?

Are you saying no water rinse after brushing w/ toothpaste?


Dear A:

The mouth rinses serve different purposes and so they are used accordingly:

Closys is creating “oxygen bubbles” (not exactly – but concept is this) so give it a little time to work around any teeth with periodontal or gum issues.

1 minute is good but if you have gum issues 2 minutes would be better.

If your mouth is healthy with no gum problems 30-60 seconds will clean and prepare teeth for brushing.

Next you will brush your teeth with the Crest CAVITY PROTECTION toothpaste. Spit out the toothpaste but leave the residue – don’t wash it away.

This toothpaste residue will “protect” your teeth from the Listerine.

Listerine is a quick and vigorous rinse. Think of it as liquid flossing!

It is the best rinse to quell any gum inflammation and stop any bleeding.

Listerine rinse will wash away plaque bacteria (since the xylitol makes them slippery).

Vigorous swishing – short 30 secs max.

Final rinse with ACT should be long and leisurely – to let the ACT work and strengthen teeth.

Spit out well – but try not to eat or drink for a while after – to ensure the newly remineralized enamel has a chance to harden and not get washed away.

Best Wishes,


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