Mouthwash overdose occurs when someone accidentally or intentionally takes more than the normal or recommended amount of this substance.
This is for information only and not for use in the treatment or management of an actual poison exposure. If you have an exposure, you should call your local emergency number (such as 911) or the National Poison Control Center at 1-800-222-1222.
Burns and damage to the clear covering of the front of the eye (cornea)
Low body temperature
Low blood pressure
Low blood sugar
Rapid heart rate
Rapid, shallow breathing
Skin redness and pain
Urination problems (too much or too little urine)
Vomiting (may contain blood)
Seek immediate medical help. Do NOT make a person throw up unless told to do so by poison control or a health care professional.
Before Calling Emergency
Determine the following:
Patient's age, weight, and condition
Name of the product (ingredients and strengths, if known)
Time it was swallowed
The National Poison Control Center (1-800-222-1222) can be called from anywhere in the United States. This national hotline number will let you talk to experts in poisoning. They will give you further instructions.
This is a free and confidential service. All local poison control centers in the United States use this national number. You should call if you have any questions about poisoning or poison prevention. It does NOT need to be an emergency. You can call for any reason, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
The health care provider will measure and monitor your vital signs, including temperature, pulse, breathing rate, and blood pressure. Symptoms will be treated as appropriate. You may receive:
Breathing support, including a breathing tube
Fluids through a vein (by IV)
Kidney dialysis (in serious cases)
Tube through the mouth into the stomach to wash out the stomach (gastric lavage)
You may be admitted to the hospital.
How well you do depends on the amount of poison swallowed and how quickly treatment is received. The faster you get medical help, the better the chance for recovery. Drinking large amounts of mouthwash may lead to a syndrome similar to alcohol intoxication.
Jacob L. Heller, MD, MHA, Emergency Medicine, Virginia Mason Medical Center, Seattle, Washington. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.