Using mouthwash could ‘cut risk of dying of Covid’: Poor oral health linked to getting severely ill
Swilling mouthwash every morning could help to protect you against Covid, another study has suggested.
Egyptian researchers found people with poor oral health were more likely to suffer severe symptoms if they caught the virus.
It is the latest in a long line of studies which have linked bad oral hygiene to Covid risk, prompting pleas for the public to take better care of their teeth.
Scientists behind the study claimed the mouth may act as a reservoir for the virus, allowing infected patients to have a high ‘viral load’ — particles circulating through the body.
Typically, the more virus someone has in their body, the more likely they are to become severely ill.
It is the latest piece of research to highlight mouthwash as a potential tool to help kill off Covid.
Normally, Covid enters through the throat or nose where it multiplies and makes its way through the respiratory system to the lungs. But some experts have speculated that the virus may spread into the blood after infecting their gums.
Could using mouthwash help prevent or reduce the severity of a Covid infection? A team of cardiologists said new research indicates that maintaining good oral hygiene helped Covid patients reduce their symptoms and recover quicker from the virus
Cairo University experts tested the theory on a group of 86 Covid patients suffering from heart disease.
Medics assessed the patients’ oral hygiene and the severity of their symptoms.
Results showed patients with better oral hygiene had milder Covid symptoms and less inflammation in their bodies.
HOW COULD MOUTHWASH FIGHT COVID-19?
Coronaviruses belong to the class of ‘enveloped viruses’, meaning they are covered by a fatty layer that is vulnerable to certain chemicals.
Studies have suggested agents found in mouthwash – such as low amounts of ethanol – could disrupt the membranes of other lipid viruses, in the same way as UV rays.
For instance, researchers say iodine mouthwashes have proved effective against SARS and MERS, two diseases caused by similar coronaviruses.
In April, a team of researchers which included NHS doctors claimed that brushing your teeth thoroughly could lower the risk of falling seriously ill with coronavirus.
They said ‘simple oral hygiene’ such as brushing teeth twice a day for at least two minutes and using mouthwash after meals could cut the risk of severe Covid.
They also recovered quicker, according to the researchers who have yet to publish their full findings.
Study author Dr Ahmed Mustafa Basuoni said using mouthwash could help people avoid Covid entirely and have milder symptoms if they caught the virus.