Herbal Oral Rinse (Mouthwash)

So, ya…  My last dentist appt. was not good.  I have a couple cavities.  I do intend on getting them filled, but making time to do that is ridiculously hard for me right now.  The past two years of my life have been dedicated to growing a baby and caring for an infant, so, the mama’s of the world can probably relate to the fact that trips to the dentist don’t come easy.  Oops.  I am a person with needs too.  I forget that sometimes…

Herbal Oral Rinse In the mean time, while I’m getting myself sorted, I put together an oral rinse that will help repair and prevent more damage.  It is a great rinse that can/should be used daily and the herbs found in the rinse are excellent for oral care.  Let’s examine them:

Propolis:  Used for toothaches, infections, and a number of ailments, propolis has a well known number of antimicrobial and antibacterial properties; second to none.  Propolis comes from bees, who collect tree resins and then combine those resins with their saliva and beeswax to create propolis.  Propolis plays one of the most important functions in the hive, sealing and protecting to create one of the most sterile environments found in nature.  Dr. Mercola shares that “propolis has been found to prevent the formation of dental plaque by inhibiting the activity of certain enzymes that synthesize glucans from sucrose.”  Propolis, in my opinion, is an essential part of any oral care regimen.

Echinacea:  This versatile herb is good for more things than just cold and flu!  It is also anti-microbial and can help draw out infections.  Perfect for anything lingering in the mouth that doesn’t belong.  Many Native tribes have used echinacea for oral care for centuries.  Echinacea is an analgesic and has been known to soothe achy gums.  It is a well tolerated herb by almost all and makes a great addition to an oral rinse.

Oregon Grape Root:  Used by many, myself included, in place of the troubled, endangered, and nearly extinct Goldenseal.  These two possess many of the same properties, and it is said that perhaps Oregon Grape Root may even be more potent.  Also, native to my region, it is fun to wildcraft.  Oregon Grape Root is astringent, and antimicrobial.  It can treat and prevent infections, and is a great immune-booster.  It has been proven to kill some of the nastiest of pathogens.  Definitely a great friend in helping to create a healthy mouth!

Myrrh:  commonly used to fight bad breath and the agents that cause it, Myrrh is a resinous sap from the Comminphora tree.  It has been used for centuries, and is part of Ayruvedic and Chinese medicines.  Myrrh is also good for your gums reducing swelling and inflamation.

Plaintain:  Not just a weed!  (And no, DH, it’s not a banana ;))  Plaintain has been used to reduce inflammation, reduce swelling and inflamation in the gums, treat infections, heal gum disease and treat mouth ulcers.  Likely found growing in your yard, this awesome herb is a must-have in any oral rinse!

Herbal Mouthwash For my herbal mouthwash, I combined extracts (tinctures) of these herbs, and I store at full strength in a glass dropper-bottle in my bathroom, along with a small cup.  I fill my small glass cup, (ok, it’s a shot glass), with a swig of water and 2 dropperfuls of my mouthwash.

*Note:  When the mouthwash is combined with the water it will turn cloudy.  This is a normal result of the propolis mixing with the water.

I swish this around in my mouth for at least 30 seconds, and spit it out.  I personally don’t rinse afterword, though some may want to.

I had tinctures of echinacea and Oregon grape root at the ready, but purchased the rest of my supplies from Mountain Rose Herbs.  If you already have all of the dried herbs, you could easily tincture this up with a little vodka or brandy.  I didn’t have time to waste, so this time around I used a pre-made tincture.  So easy.  Thank God.

Herbal Oral Rinse

In a dark-colored, 2 ounce glass dropper bottle, combine:

Use 1-2 dropperfuls mixed with water.  Swish and spit.  For best results, use twice daily.
**This recipe was inspired by this post.

I know many of you have excellent herbal oral care regimens.  Share them with us in the comments below or on my facebook page!


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Shared with:  From the Farm, Frugal Days Sustainable Ways


  1. When you say “tinctures” I feel like you do not mean “essential oil”, but I can’t find anything on Mountain Rose’s site for buying tinctures….Can you help me figure it out? I’m too silly to do it myself 🙂

  2. hello,
    Could you comment on how long to do this oral rinse for? and how long before you noticed the expected results?…thx

    • Hi Sonny, this is my daily oral rinse. I think you could expect to see an improvement in your oral health in a few weeks to a month. This is one part of an oral care regimen. Not a cure-all

  3. When I made this the propolis clumped together in the tinctures. It didn’t blend at all. I bought my ingredients at Mountain Rose. Why didn’t it blend?

    • Hi MaryBeth,
      Propolis finds its best solubility in alcohol. I would recommend adding a TINY bit more alcohol to the tincture to see if that helps? Mostly, I just shake the heck outta mine and then use a dropperful right away. Sorry I cannot be more helpful.

  4. Was wondering if you know this receipe will be as effective without the bee propolis. I’m not sure but I think I might have an allergic reaction to the propolis, but want to try a herbal remedy for my receding gums. Thank you!

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