Bad Breath Busters

So bad breath is embarrassing.. It’s especially bad on a first date or an important business meeting, but in addition to the humiliation that it can bring about, it can be a sign that you have a medical problem. About 80% of bad breath comes from an oral source. Halitosis is caused when bacteria in the mouth isn’t correctly brushed or flossed away. It accumulates inside the mouth and releases compounds that cause the breath to smell. Cavities or gum disease can also lead to bad breath, as can trapped food particles; cracked fillings, and dirty dentures. If you’ve had bad breath for a long time, and hopefully, someone close to you has gently brought the issue to your attention, talk to a Tempe dentist right away.

Fight Bad Breath with Tempe Smiles Family Dental

In the meantime, here are some tips to help

  • Watch what you eat. What you eat affects what you exhale. That’s because as food is digested, it’s absorbed into your bloodstream and is then expelled by your lungs when you breathe. Eat a healthy, balanced diet and regular meals, and when snack time hits, consider raw carrots, celery, or apple slices.
  • Good oral hygiene. Ideally, you should brush and floss after every meal to help reduce the bacteria in your mouth. Our tongues also accumulate odor-causing plaque much like our teeth do, so be sure to also brush your tongue.
  • Stay hydrated. If you can’t brush your teeth after a meal, drinking water can help speed up the process of cleaning harmful bacteria from between your teeth. Drinking milk can even help deodorize some offensive breath odors.
  • Don’t drink too much coffee. It may be wonderful, but coffee is a tough smell to get off the back of your tongue. Consider switching to an herbal or green tea.
  • Don’t smoke. This one’s a no-brainer, but it’s especially an issue if you have gum disease.
  • Cut back on alcohol. Alcohol leads to dry mouth, and too much can make your breath reek for up to eight to 10 hours after you finish drinking.
  • Chew sugarless gum. Doing so 20 minutes after a meal can help with saliva flow, and gum that’s 100% xylitol-sweetened can even help reduce cavities.

Be careful with breath mints. Sugar-free mints are a quick fix but only mask the offensive smell, and pass on the sugary mints at the door when leaving restaurants. The sugar can actually make matters worse.