Mouthwash use may raise risk of cancer

DENTAL experts in Glasgow have warned against "routine" use of mouthwash because it may increase the risk of mouth and throat cancer.

Loading Comments

A study also found poor oral health and failure to have ­regular dental checks ­increased the risks.

Smoking and heavy alcohol consumption, particularly in combination, are known to raise the risk of mouth and throat cancers.

Now, a new study ­carried out by researchers at the University of Glasgow Dental School has identified other risk factors for cancer of the mouth, larynx, pharynx and the oesophagus.

The study of 1962 ­patients with mouth and throat cancers, with a further 1993 people used as comparison, was conducted in 13 centres across nine countries and supported by EU funding.

People with poor ­dental care were ­defined as those who hardly ever or never brushed or visited the dentist and those with persistently bleeding gums.

Researchers found that use of mouthwashes three times plus each day was associated with an elevated risk of developing mouth and throat cancer.

Dr David Conway, Clinical Senior Lecturer at the University of Glasgow Dental School, said: "I would not ­advise routine use of mouthwash, full stop.

"There are occasions and conditions for which a dentist could prescribe a mouthwash. It could be that a patient has a low salivary flow because of a particular condition or medicine they are taking.

"But for me, all that's necessary in general is good regular brushing with a fluoride toothpaste and flossing combined with regular check-ups by a dentist.

"Even if you have got dentures, you should have regular check-ups."


Commenting & Moderation

We moderate all comments on Evening Times on either a pre-moderated or post-moderated basis. If you're a relatively new user then your comments will be reviewed before publication and if we know you well and trust you then your comments will be subject to moderation only if other users or the moderators believe you've broken the rules

Moderation is undertaken full-time 9am-6pm on weekdays, and on a part-time basis outwith those hours. Please be patient if your posts are not approved instantly.


Have you got a story?

Contact the news desk on 0141 302 6520 or email
A weekly round up of social highlights

A weekly round up of social highlights

Cat's Eyes on Glasgow

Italian at Osteria Del Tempo Perso, a Rox party and Karen Dunbar at Aye Write!




Gail’s Gab

Gail’s Gab

Gail Sheridan is a mother-of-one and wife to Tommy and she likes to get political with the hot topic of the week in her column Gail’s Gab.

Michelle McManus

Michelle McManus

Sussed in the City

The secret is out, get out that red swimsuit as I’m sharing a stage with the Hoff

Janice Bell

Janice Bell

You couldn’t make up half the stuff that happens to PA Janice Bell- some of the jams she gets herself into are worth a story or two.