6 Ways to Help You Beat Bad Breath
Bad breath is the killer of any social situation – especially that all-important first date. Those up-close and personal moments will quickly turn cold if your date catches a whiff of your not-so-fresh breath. While you may go the extra mile to avoid any foods with garlic or onion, halitosis can still be a serious issue for some people.
Rather than isolate yourself from friends and family, you can take comfort in knowing that there are many other people out there just like you. One in five people, or 20% of the population, suffer from halitosis. More than half of the men and women in the United States use breath freshening products on a regular basis. Nearly three billion dollars is spent each year on these products, which include gum and mouth washes. The good news is that bad breath can be eliminated with relative ease. Before we delve into which bad breath solutions are most effective, we first need to discuss the causes of bad breath.
Causes of Bad Breath
There are many different causes for bad breath, but the vast majority has to do with diet choices and poor oral hygiene practices. The most common causes are:
• Irregular brushing and flossing: When teeth and not properly cleaned, food particles rot inside of the mouth and release unpleasant odors. Furthermore, these food particles encourage the growth of plaque, which emits its own foul odor.
• Use of tobacco products: Tobacco products such as cigarettes leave behind odor-causing chemicals in the mouth.
• Food choices: Aside from poor oral hygiene, food choices play a significant role in the development of bad breath. Foods that produce the most offensive odors include garlic, onions, spicy foods, fish, some cheese and acidic beverages like coffee.
• Dry mouth: Also known as xerostomia, dry mouth is something that affects many people. Dry mouth tends to become a major problem during the winter when the air in your home is at its driest.
• Medications: There are some medications that can cause halitosis. These are often antihistamines and diuretics that contribute to the development of dry mouth.
• Morning breath is an issue that affects many people as well. Saliva production slows while the body is sleeping, which creates the perfect breeding ground for bacteria.
How to Cure Halitosis
There are just as many cures for halitosis as there are causes for the condition. In most cases, it is best to first determine what is causing your halitosis before selecting a treatment. Let’s take a look at the some bad breath solutions that may be effective for you:
1. Keep your mouth clean: Breath order prevention is the best way to keep halitosis under control. Brush your teeth at least twice a day and do not forget to floss. Many people also fail to give their tongue a good cleaning, which is a key part of having fresh breath. It is recommended that you scrape your tongue twice a day in addition to regular brushing and flossing.
2. Drink plenty of water: Staying hydrated is a great way to combat bad breath, especially if you are unable to brush your teeth after a meal. Ensuring that you drink plenty of water will help eliminate debris and odor-causing bacteria from your teeth.
3. Skip the after-dinner breath mint: If you are looking for chronic bad breath cures, leave breath mints at the door. Breath mints often contain large amounts of sugar, which only contribute to bacterial growth and could actually make the problem worse. The minty smell may mask the unpleasant odor, but it does not eliminate the root cause of the problem. Try eating parsley, celery, carrots or an apple instead. These foods are known to promote fresh breath and the tough skin of an apple can help eliminate plaque.
4. Cut back on coffee and alcohol: When searching for bad breath cures, many people fail to realize that their favorite beverages may be the root cause of the problem. Cutting back on your consumption of acidic beverages like coffee and alcohol can go a long way in preventing bad breath. It may not be a fan-favorite cure, but it is highly effective.
5. Watch what you eat: Unfortunately, many foods that cause bad breath, like garlic and onions, are actually good for your health. While you may not want to eliminate them completely, you can ensure that you avoid these foods when in intimate social situations. In the very least, you can be prepared by bringing a travel toothbrush with you. This will give you a chance to fight bad breath head-on before it can ruin your night.
6. Keep dentures and retainers clean: Bridges, dentures, retainers and mouth guards can also fall victim to bacteria growth. Be sure to give all of your dental appliances a thorough cleaning each day to remove this bacterium and the odors they emit. There are several cleaning products on the market today, but your dentist can provide you with some recommendations.
Bad breath is no laughing matter. While there are many people that suffer with halitosis, finding the right treatment is not always an easy task. If none of these solutions provide you with relief, it may be time to see your Greeley dentist. Make an appointment with Dr. Williams today and finally put an end to bad breath for good.