Also known as halitosis, bad breath is very embarrassing mainly because it is almost impossible to smell your breath. It takes the courage of an honest friend or relative to help you realize that your mouth is infected with odor-causing bacteria. Sometime, lousy breath could result from smoking, dry mouth, gum disease, sinus conditions, medical conditions, or eating certain foods. However, these tips can make a significant change to your oral hygiene if conducted in conjunction with your frequent dental visits and care.
Tips to Control Bad Breath
1. Avoid Mouth Dehydration
Dry mouth is a harbor for bacteria that star up bad breath. A hydrated mouth is critical, especially before and after activities that cause rapid breathing such as heavy exercise. Other causative agents of hydration include smoking, medications, sleep and breathing through the mouth. Ensure that your mouth is moisturized by drinking enough water because it’s one of the simplest ways to curb bad breath. If your mouth runs dry, it becomes almost impossible to produce saliva, creating an environment for bacteria causing bad breath to develop.
2. Healthy Eating Habits
Did you know that certain foods like raw garlic and onion induce bad breath? After ingestion and digestion, such foods are excreted through the lungs, resulting in halitosis. Foods rich in white sugars (Sugary cereals), refined foods and acidic diets (such as kinds of vinegar) increase bacteria production, and you should avoid them. On the contrary, stick to a diet that minimizes stomach upsets and halitosis-causing bacteria. Improve foods that help increase saliva flow and fight bacteria build up including:
• Cereals like brown rice
• Apples, raw celery, and carrots
• Dark green and orange vegetables
• Proteins such as beans, fish, nuts, and seeds.
It is wise to eat crunchy vegetables and fiber-rich fruits- they are useful in cleansing food particles that cling in your mouth while you eat.
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3. Thoroughly Brush Your Teeth and Gums
Bad breath is primarily linked to poor oral hygiene. Tiny food particles remain even after you rinse your mouth after eating. If you fail to brush and floss regularly, the small chunks of food particles will stick between your teeth. With time, your breath smells like rotten eggs or sulfur. Mouthwash and toothpaste will only fix the problems temporarily. In a layman’s language, it’s similar to using perfume to cover the stink of sweat. The only viable solution to this problem is eliminating the cause- the bacteria. You need to brush the following places thoroughly:
• On the teeth
• Under the gums
Dentists recommend brushing of teeth to be done after every meal. However, it’s healthy you clean them twice daily.
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4. Use of Oral Irrigator
Also called water jet, it is a device for home dental care designed such that it stream water pulses into your mouth to remove food debris and plaque. It’s very efficient because water streams can go deeper into the mouth and accesses the spaces between teeth with ease. Besides, when used along with your routine brushing, an irrigator improves control over bad breath by far.
5. Scrape Your Tongue
Your tongue can harbor lots of food particles. Amino acids and bacteria combine to form a compound on your tongue, producing an unpleasant sulfur-like odor. Scrub your tongue using a scraper or a brush to get rid of these compounds. You may notice brown or yellow saliva when you spit after scraping. Make a habit of rubbing your tongue every time you brush your teeth.
6. Avoid Skipping Meals
Staying without a meal for an extended period dehydrates your mouth, and it becomes an excellent breeding site for bacteria.
If symptoms persist, you need to visit your dentist for a more professional check-up treatment.