Have you ever entered a board meeting fearing your last tea cup might be still lingering in your mouth? Or gone on a date where you ended up desperately looking for some mint or mouth freshener? We have all been haunted by bad breath problems one too many times in our lives.
To know the causes of bad breath in detail and to put this problem to rest once and for all, we got in touch with oral health expert and practicing dentist Dr. Aashita Daswani. Here are thirteen amazing tips that will help you get rid of bad breath problems permanently.
1. Brush and floss more often
Of course the basic one but the most important.
Plaque, the sticky build-up on your teeth, collects bacteria that cause bad breath. Trapped food also adds to the problem. Brush your teeth at least two times each day, and floss at least once.
2. Rinse your mouth out
Besides freshening your breath, a mouthwash adds extra protection by getting rid of bacteria. A fresh minty taste can make you feel good. You can also help your breath if you wash your mouth with plain water after you eat. It can get rid of food particles that get stuck in your teeth. Just a small effort helps big time!
3. Scrape your tongue
The coating that normally forms on your tongue can be a host for smelly bacteria. To get rid of them, gently brush your tongue with your toothbrush.
“If your brush is too big and makes you uncomfortable while reaching the back of your tongue, try a scraper. They are designed specifically to apply even pressure across the surface of the tongue area. This removes bacteria, food debris, and dead cells that brushing alone can't take care of," suggests Dr. Aashita Daswani
4. Be careful of foods that sour your breath
Onions and garlic are big offenders. Even brushing after you eat onions and garlic doesn't help. The substances that cause their bad smells make their way into your bloodstream and travel to your lungs, where you breathe them out. The best way to solve the problem? Avoid them before you go to work or see friends or before any social gatherings. So, you better ditch that garlic bread on your next brunch meeting.
5. Kick the tobacco habit
Besides causing cancer, smoking can damage your gums, stain your teeth, and give you bad breath. Over-the-counter nicotine patches can help tame the urge. If you need a little help, make an appointment with your doctor to talk about quit-smoking programs or prescription medications that can help you give up tobacco for good. Now that you have more reason, its time to finally kick the bud.
6. Skip after-dinner sweets and chew gum instead
Gum stimulates saliva, which is the mouth's natural defence mechanism against plaque acids, which cause tooth decay and bad breath. The bacteria in your mouth love sugar thats present in chocolates and sweets. They use it to make acid which wears down your teeth and causes bad breath. Chew sugarless gum preferably one that contains xylitol instead.
7. Keep your gums healthy
Gum disease causes bad breath. Bacteria gather in pockets at the base of teeth, which creates an odour. If you have gum disease, your dentist may suggest a deep cleaning and medicated mouthwashes. If necessary may recommend you to see a periodontist, who specializes in treating it.
8. Wet your whistle
Be sure to drink a sufficient amount of water (six to eight 8-ounce glasses) daily to avoid dry mouth. You can get tooth decay and bad breath if you don't make enough saliva. If your mouth is dry, drink plenty of water during the day. Chew sugarless gum or suck on sugar-free hard candy. Also try a humidifier at night to moisten the air in your house.
9.Home remedies always help!
Chew a handful of cloves, fennel seeds, or aniseeds. Their antiseptic qualities help fight halitosis-causing bacteria. Chew a piece of lemon or orange peel for a mouth-freshening burst of flavour. (Wash the peel thoroughly first.) The citric acid will stimulate the salivary glands—and fight bad breath.
Chew a fresh sprig of parsley, basil, mint, or cilantro. The chlorophyll in these green plants neutralizes odours.
10. Eat Crunchy
What you eat also matters when you are trying to get rid of bad breath. Crisp, fresh foods naturally clean the teeth. This includes fruits and vegetables like apples, lettuce, carrots, pears and raw cucumber. Such foods also add antioxidants that boost health, including dental health.
11. Keep the denture clean
If you wear dentures, remove them at night and clean them to get rid of bacterial build-up from food and drink. Clean them regularly to ensure there are no plaque or food debris stuck in them. Certain denture cleaning tablets are commercially available that can additionally help in cleaning and kill bacteria.
12.Eat a balanced diet
Eating a diet low in carbohydrates to lose or maintain weight can also result in bad breath. Such a diet makes the body release ketones. These are foul-smelling chemicals that are released from the body through the breath.Be sure to follow a balanced diet.
13.Consult your doctor
If your bad breath continues despite your best efforts, make an appointment with your doctor. He'll check to see if your problems are related to a medical condition.
So, these were the top suggestions from the experts on solving bad breath issues. Follow these and we are sure bad breath problems will never haunt you ever again.
As you would have noticed many of the above points are taken care of just by having proper dental habits in place. For others, a timely dental check-up or expert advice goes a long way for a healthy dental life.
Dr Aashita Daswani