If you experience an unpleasant odor emanating from your mouth when you talk or exhale air, you’ve got bad breath.
Bad news is, it can be really bad and affect you socially. Good news is, you are not alone in and it can stopped, or at the very least, reduced to to barest minimum.
Bad breath (known medically as halitosis) is often the result of poor dental hygiene. This means, if you don’t observe regular brushing habit for your teeth, probably brushing twice a day, there is a high tendency for food particles to get stuck in your teeth, thus promoting bacteria activity in the teeth.
Bad breath sometimes might be a sign of gum (periodontal) disease. It also might be an indicator for systemic diseases such as pneumonia, chronic sinus infection, bronchitis, post nasal drip, diabetes and chronic acid reflux.
Some type of foods do impact breath odor and examples include Onions, garlic and fermented cabbage juice.
What You Can Do to Prevent Bad Breath
While bad breath can be a really bad experience, there are healthy practices you can maintain to combat it and restore your confidence while you speak.
1. Maintain Good Oral Hygiene
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Practicing good oral hygiene is fundamental to combating bad breath. Brush your teeth twice a day with preferably, a fluoride toothpaste. This will effectively remove the plaque and food debris that might have accumulated in your teeth.
When brushing your teeth, you should not forget your tongue too. The tongue can be host to a variety of bacterial organism. It is thus important to gently clean your tongue with a soft tongue brush (click here). Doing so will effectively remove bacteria and food particles that may evade your toothbrush.
Brushing your teeth immediately after each meal will also be very helpful. If you use traditional toothbrushes it is important you replace them every two months as they wear off due to friction and also because of bacteria accumulation and action on brush bristles (which in turn can cause bad breath). Better still, you can simply switch to an anti-bacterial toothbrush which reduces bacterial accumulation and action on brush bristles.
Getting regular mouthwash has also proven to be very helpful in combating bad breath. Your mouthwash will give soothing freshness to your breath. Mouthwash with antibacterial activity are also effective against odor causing bacterial agents lurking around your oral cavity.
2. Watch Out For Foods With Pungent Odor
Sometimes, no matter how well you brush your teeth, there are certain types of bad breath that just won’t go away. You need to check what you eat.
When it comes to causing obnoxious mouth odor, vegetables such as onions and garlic are chief offenders. Brushing is usually ineffective against bad breath caused by these food substances because the chemicals they release find their way into the bloodstream and then into the lungs via the pulmonary blood circulation. These chemicals are then breathed out to the exterior, contributing to bad breath.
One way to deal with obnoxious mouth odor caused by food is to drink lots of water after eating them and also rinse the mouth with mouthwash.
You can also put a limit on how much of these foods you eat and when you do take them (you might want to skip garlic if you are going out in the mornings and have them at night at home)
3. Keep Your Mouth Moist
Since a dry mouth is one major cause of bad breath, it is necessary to keep the mouth moist in other to stop or prevent offensive mouth odor. Drinking lots of water is enough to keep the mouth moist and reduce the incidence of bad breath.
Another way to keep your mouth moist is to chew gum. The chewing of gums can increase the secretion of saliva by the salivary glands. Saliva is bactericidal and thus helps to kill bacteria in the mouth. If you do chew gums, choose the sugar free types as they are much better for your oral health.
4. Go for Regular Oral Checkup
Your mouth is just as important as every other part of your body. Thus, when going for a body checkup, don’t forget to see your dentist too. Make it a habit to check up with your dentist at least twice a year. Your dentist might detect gum disease early and help you treat this condition which contributes in no small way to bad breath.
5. Keep Records
Keep records of the changes you have made in the process of combating your bad breath. Keep a record of the food you eat and your lifestyle changes. Also, keep records of your medications if you are on any. Take these records regularly to your dentist for review.
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