Mouthwash and Alcoholism: How to Prevent A Relapse and A Hospital Visits

For many people, mouthwash is simply an addition to their oral hygiene. For the drinking individual, however, mouthwash is more insidious – data shows that around 10-15% of alcoholics that end up in an emergency room land there after drinking mouthwash or other products not originally designed for drinking.

Important Facts About Your Mouthwash

Many brands of mouthwash contain high levels of alcohol, with an average of 22% alcohol. For instance, the popular Listerine brand contains 26.9% alcohol. While other products have lower levels of alcohol (Scope – 18.9%, Cepacol – 14%, etc.), they are still much more toxic than a single beer (usually between 3% and 7%).

What is more, buying mouthwash is easy. One can get it when their local liquor shop is closed, for example. Note that many young drinkers turn to mouthwash as nobody will ask for an ID, will they?

Alcohol in Mouthwash

Additionally, mouthwash is relatively cheap. Let’s not forget that it’s easy to steal from a drug store as well. News revealed that stores in Alaska had moved their mouthwash products behind the counters to prevent theft.

Last but not least, one can easily abuse mouthwash – at home, at work, even in the hospital. And, hey, you don’t need to explain anything because your breath is always fresh.

Can you get drunk on mouthwash?

Yes; the popular Listerine mouthwash is 26.9% alcohol. In fact a number of household liquids contain alcohol and can be used to get drunk, including hand sanitizer, hair spray, and perfume. Using mouthwash or other substances, however, can cause serious bodily harm.

While some people argue that manufacturers should sell products that don’t contain any alcohol, drinkers admit that there’s nothing that can stop the drinking individual. If it’s not mouthwash, they can get their alcohol dose from hand sanitizers, hair sprays, or perfumes.

Is drinking mouthwash dangerous?

Yes, drinking mouthwash is very dangerous. The ethanol in the mouthwash can cause ulcers and liver problems. Some brands contain methanol, which is poisonous Other chemicals present in many mouthwashes can cause severe diarrhea, vomiting, and headaches.

Drinking mouthwash is a common phenomenon among alcoholics. Although all the side effects of drinking mouthwash are stated on the labels, and many studies show cases of mouthwash intoxication, alcoholics still abuse mouthwash, which is dangerous.

The main danger is the ethanol (ethyl alcohol), which can be found in many spirits. Consumed in excess, it can cause ulcers and liver problems. Another danger is the wood alcohol, known as methanol: it’s poisonous and lethal. Other chemicals that are present in many mouthwash products can cause mouth cancer. Drinking mouthwash can also cause diarrhea, vomiting, and headaches.

Therefore, more awareness should be raised about the possible fatal outcomes of drinking mouthwash.

How to prevent a relapse from mouthwash?

Drinking mouthwash is dangerous. To prevent a relapse and fatal outcomes:

  • Pay attention if someone has too many mouthwash bottles at home.
  • If someone smells of mouthwash too often, note that they might have an addiction.
  • Buy only alcohol-free mouthwash products.
  • Ask for professional help.
Recovery is a long process, so don’t let your “fresh breath” ruin it!