Review of Listerine Total Care Anticavity Mouthwash

What is the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the word "mouthwash"? Chances are, your first thought might be getting rid of embarrassing bad breath and freshening your breath. Listerine, the makers of a wide selection of mouthwashes, have introduced a new mouthwash that goes beyond just freshening your breath.

Listerine Total Care Anticavity Mouthwash claims to provide six benefits in one rinse, such as

  • Prevent Cavities
  • Restore cause bad breath
  • Freshen breath
  • Fight plaque above the gumline

Overall, Listerine Total Care Anticavity mouthwash really freshens your breath after each use, however, it is very strong, and did cause my mouth to burn after the first few uses.

Consumers that are already acquainted with Listerine's products will no doubt enjoy using the Total Care Anticavity Rinse. First-time users may need some time for their mouth to become accustomed to the rinse before they are able to use the rinse for the full 60 seconds.

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  • The rinse had a nice mint flavor and left a pleasant aftertaste.
  • Breath was very fresh after each use.


  • This very strong solution may not be tolerated in the mouth for the full 60 seconds.
  • Users may experience a burning sensation due to the strength of the solution.


  • Recommended for persons 12 and older.
  • After brushing and flossing, use twice a day, by swishing 10ml of solution vigorously in the mouth for 60 seconds.
  • The presence of sodium fluoride and acidulated phosphate topical solution helps to prevent cavities and restore enamel.
  • Kills the germs that cause bad breath, along with fighting plaque found above the gumline.
  • Suggested retail price:
    • 250 ml (8.5 fl oz.) $3.19 - $3.79
    • 500 ml (1.5 pt.) $3.99 - $4.79
    • 1 liter (1 qt 1.8 fl oz.) $5.29 - $5.89

    Users are instructed to brush and floss their teeth, before using the rinse. This particular mouthwash contains sodium fluoride, which is used to prevent cavities. In order to receive the full benefit of the fluoride, it is recommended that after using the mouthwash, you wait 30 minutes before eating or drinking.

    I dispensed the recommended 10 ml of the solution, set my stopwatch, and took a sip. I began to "swish vigorously" as indicated on the instructions. A sense of relief came over me when I realized that my mouth was not on fire, and then the 20-second mark hit. Out of nowhere my mouth started to tingle, which lead to a full on burning sensation all throughout my mouth. I did my best to swish as vigorously as I could and hold out for the full 60 seconds. I spit out the mouthwash and noted the time: 34 seconds. I was rather disappointing in myself for failing to rinse for the full 60 seconds, but as my mouth continued to burn, I knew that I didn't have a hope.

    I took a look at the ingredients of the Total Care Mouthwash, and noted the third ingredient to be "alcohol (21.6)". I have a strong suspicion that this ingredient could be what instigates the strong burning sensation many users feel after using a mouthwash that contains alcohol.

    I wanted to give this mouthwash the benefit of the doubt, and provide you with an accurate review, so I grit my teeth (literally) and continued to use the rinse twice a day for about two weeks. I can say that by the third day of regular use, my mouth seemed to become accustomed to the rinse, and the burning sensation lessened with each use thereafter. I managed to work up to the full 60 seconds of rinsing on day four and found my mouth to feel very fresh and clean after using the mouthwash.

    After sticking to my guns, I am generally very pleased with Listerine Total Care Anticavity Mouthwash, however, I would be even more impressed if the makers of Listerine mouthwash could limit or possibly eliminate the presence of the alcohol in the rinse, yet keep the breath freshening power that is synonymous with their mouthwash.

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