Researchers from the University of Queensland and the University of Melbourne have revealed that prolonged use of mouthwashes may lead to cancer. The researchers said that mouthwash was a good treatment option in treating dental plaque and gingivitis, but extended usage of the same may actually be harmful.
The researchers said that frequent use of mouthwash increases the risk of oral cancer by nine times. In people who smoke, this risk increases in multiples, while people who drink alcohol have five times the risk of developing oral cancer by using mouthwashes.
"Although many popular mouthwashes may help to control dental plaque and gingivitis, they should only be used for a short time and only as an adjunct to other oral hygiene measures such as brushing and flossing," the researchers wrote.
The details of the study appear in the latest issue of the National Prescribing Service journal Australian Prescriber.