Have you ever used essential oils for oral care? Essential oils can fight against germs and other harmful pathogens, while also freshening breath. This simple but effective Homemade Peppermint and Tea Tree Oil Mouthwash recipe will keep your mouth clean and your breath fresh. PLUS, more DIY mouthwash recipes are included!
Did you know that what happens in your mouth impacts the health of your entire body? Healthline shares more on the relationship between gum health and heart health:
Gum disease (aka periodontal disease) is inflammation of the gums. It can lead to the breakdown of the gums, teeth, and bone tissues that hold them in place. Gum disease may increase the risk of heart disease because inflammation in the gums and bacteria may eventually lead to the narrowing of important arteries (heart disease).
Here is a closer look at the inflammation link from Harvard:
"Periodontal disease increases the body's burden of inflammation," says periodontist Dr. Hatice Hasturk of the Harvard-affiliated Forsyth Institute. Acute inflammation — which involves an outpouring of immune cells that attack irritants and microbial invaders — fosters healing over the short term. But long-term (chronic) inflammation is a key contributor to many health problems, especially atherosclerosis.
Let essential oils assist in your oral routine so you can naturally eliminate harmful bacteria and inflammation in the mouth and gums. Making your own mouthwash with essential oils is a simple way to put them into action. Homemade mouthwash also costs less than most commercial preparations.
Best Essential Oils for Mouthwash
Wondering what the best essential oils are to use in mouthwash? Findings have shown that essential oils can have positive effects on oral health and can assist with common problems such as bad breath and gum disease.
Here are 8 essential oils that you can use in natural mouthwash recipes:
1. Peppermint Essential Oil
- Obtained through the process of steam distilling the leaves of Mentha piperita, buy here
- Frequently used in toothpaste, mouth rinse, and other dental preparations
- Cooling and refreshing effects
- Analgesic properties help to soothe toothaches and sore gums
- Powerful oil for fighting oral germs and infections
- Has antiseptic and deodorizing actions that help combat stinky breath
2. Tea Tree Oil
- Steam distilled from the leaves of the Melaleuca alternifolia
- Natural remedy for bad breath and mouth ulcers
- Its powerful antiseptic properties combat bacterial and fungal infections
- Relieves bleeding gums and aids in healing
3. Myrrh Essential Oil
- Comes from resin that is derived from the Commiphora myrrha tree
- Can be used to fight gum disease and smelly breath
- Helps to reduce gum inflammation
- Its antiseptic properties make it a popular choice to tackle infections, sore throats, bleeding gums, and mouth ulcers
- Boosts the body’s resistance to infection
4. Clove Essential Oil
- Steam distilled from the unopened, dried flower buds of the evergreen tree, Eugenia caryophyllata
- Acts as an effective natural pain reliever (has a numbing effect)
- Used for centuries to relieve toothache and gum pain
- Helps to clean the teeth and gums while promoting fresh breath
- It has antiseptic properties that can effectively inhibit the development of bacteria and kill germs
5. Oregano Oil
- Steam distilled from the leaves of Origanum Compactum
- This powerful oil has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties
- Can help to boost the immune system
- Antibacterial action has been shown to inhibit bacteria growth
- Helps fight canker sores and throat infections
- Well known for its ability to treat fungal infection
6. Thyme Essential Oil
- Extracted from the leaves of the thyme plant Thymus vulgaris
- From the mint family, making it a popular choice for mouthwashes and flavoring oral health treatments
- Potent & powerful oil with cleansing and purifying properties
- It contains natural chemicals that help defend from tooth decay and gingivitis
7. Cinnamon Essential Oil
- Obtained from the Cinnamomum zeylanicum tree’s outer bark or its leaves (bottles may be labeled as such "Cinnamon Bark" or Cinnamon Leaf")
- Spicy flavor, Cinnamon leaf tends to be milder than Cinnamon bark
- It's antibacterial, antifungal and antiseptic properties make this oil an effective cleanser for mouth care and ailments.
8. Spearmint Essential Oil
- Obtained from the steam distillation of Mentha spicata
- Crisp, cooling, and minty fresh effect
- Known as the "Gentler Mint", spearmint offers a softer scent and its effects are milder than peppermint
- Add a drop to your toothbrush before adding your toothpaste to promote cleanliness and freshness.
Homemade Tea Tree Oil Mouthwash with Peppermint
Here is a simple essential oil mouthwash recipe to promote a healthier mouth and cleaner breath. I like to make this mouth wash blend in a mason jar but you can put it into your desired container (glass bottle is best).
- 10 drops Peppermint essential oil
- 6 drops Tea Tree essential oil
- 1 cup Purified or Distilled water
- 8 oz Mason Jar
- Add all ingredients into a glass bottle, then shake well to mix.
- Take a small sip, swish mixture around in your mouth, gargle for 30 seconds and spit out. Do not swallow.
- Shake well before each use. Use within 2 weeks for freshness, remember this is a natural mouthwash blend without preservatives.
More DIY Essential Oil Mouthwash Recipes
Oregano Mouth Rinse for Halitosis
Halitosis is the technical term for "bad breath".
Directions: Mix oil blend together. Add mixture to 1 tablespoon warm water. Swish and gargle the solution around the mouth for 3-5 minutes, then spit out into the garbage. Rinse mouth with water. Good for one treatment.
Essential Oil and Baking Soda Mouthwash
|Directions: Mix in baking soda and essential oil into warm water. To use, swish the mouthwash around in your mouth for at least 30 seconds before spitting it out. Start with one drop of oil and add more as needed. Good for one treatment.|
Simple Peppermint Oil Mouthwash
|Directions: After brushing fill the small cup (I like to use a shot glass) with warm water and oil, swish mixture around the mouth for 30-60 seconds. Good for one treatment.|
Essential Oil and Vinegar Mouthwash
|Directions: Mix in vinegar and essential oil into warm water. To use, swish the mouthwash around in your mouth for at least 30 seconds before spitting it out. Good for one treatment.|
Essential Oil Blends for Mouthwash
|Directions: Mix essential oils from one of the blends into 1/2 cup warm water and a teaspoon of fractionated coconut oil. To use, swish the mouthwash around in mouth for 30-60 seconds before spitting it out. Good for one treatment.|
How to Use Essential Oil Mouthwash
When using essential oils in mouthwash, use caution with hot oils like oregano, cinnamon, clove, and thyme. Start with one drop, stop using if mouth irritation occurs. You can dilute hot essential oils first with a teaspoon of virgin coconut oil before adding to warm water if needed.
Use mouthwash 2-3 times per day after brushing your teeth. Remember to mix well right before use because oil and water don't mix. I prefer not to use any additives when I make my DIY mouth rinses so the mixtures will separate.
Homemade mouthwash can also be used for cleaning your toothbrush. Just fill up a shot glass and place brush bristles down into the mixture. Let soak for 30 minutes. Use this method for mouth guards and retainers too.
Other good oral habits include:
- Be sure to drink plenty of water and to avoid sugary drinks
- Floss at least once per day (removes debris and plaque between teeth)
- Refrain from smoking or chewing tobacco
- Chew only sugar-free gum to stimulate saliva and reduce plaque
- Use mouthwash regularly
- Eat a healthy diet with vegetables, high-fiber foods, and low-sugar fruits
- Practice tongue scrapping (using a special tool to clean tongue)
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