Easy D.I.Y herbal mouthwash
It's so easy to make your own herbal mouthwash at home using common kitchen herbs. Today I'm sharing 3 options that are each valuable antiseptics in their own right. It's cheap and a delightfully easy way to work with plants and be a little home herbalist — tending to your own wellbeing! (is there anything more precious than that?!)
Best of all, it's alcohol free. I never understood how rinsing your mouth out with alcohol somehow equated to fresh breath and a healthy mouth. First of all, alcohol is heavily astringent and drying — and mouth dryness is one of the causes of halitosis. Secondly, our mouth is a little ecosystem that has loads of beneficial bacteria that we need for a healthy oral microbiome. I'm no scientist but my thinking is that swishing your mouth with ethanol is not only going to kill off the bad bacteria, but the good as well.
So which herbs make a quick and effective mouthwash or gargle if you're feeling a little gum inflammation, a sore throat coming on, or just feeling like your mouth needs a bit of a reset? Just look to the mightily medicinal mint family. You can pretty much rest assured that if it's from the mint family, it offers antiseptic action. Here are my trusty top 3.
OREGANO: My reverence for oregano's crime-fighting ability when it comes to unwanted bodily invaders runs deep. I've worked with oregano both internally and externally and it never ceases to amaze me her swift precision at zapping infections. Personally I don't think any natural medicine chest should be without oil of oregano. Her antibacterial, anti-fungal and mild anti-viral properties make her an excellent mouthwash and gargle for sore and inflamed gums and throats.
THYME: Beautiful thyme bears impressively high volatile oil content, making her a supreme antiseptic and therefore valuable for oral and gum health, and halitosis. As a gargle, she will also help to ease laryngitis, tonsillitis, sore throats and irritable coughs.
ROSEMARY: Along with her antiseptic action, dear rosemary is also anti-inflammatory, and mildly analgesic (pain-relieving), making her a great friend to reach for when experiencing sore gums, sore throat or halitosis, or just as a general rinse for keeping your mouth in check.
How to make herbal mouthwash at home
Finely chop 2 heaped tablespoons of fresh oregano, thyme or rosemary and toss in a jug. You can absolutely use dried herbs too! Quality dried herbs are actually more potent by volume, so just halve the dosage amount to 1 tablespoon. Note: As I had all 3 herbs when making this post, I made the mouthwash using a combination of all three. However, this is not necessary — using a single herb is just perfect, and picking one of these herbs is typically how I'd make my mouthwash preparation.
Boil a kettle and let settle for 30 seconds or so once boiled, then pour 500ml of hot water over the herbs into the jug.
Important: Once the water is in, immediately cover the jug with a lid, saucer, any object you can find that will fit over the jug! We don't want to let those precious volatile oils escape with the steam.
Let infuse for 10 minutes before straining your herbal liquid into a jar or glass.
Swish for 30 seconds twice daily after brushing, or more frequently if treating an acute condition, such as inflamed gums or sore throat. If using as a sore throat gargle, gently warming the mouthwash first will help further soothe your wee lil' voicebox.
Feel free to halve this recipe if 500ml is too much, and use mouthwash within 3 days ♥