How to control bad breath

Bad breath (medically called as Halitosis) is a description of a foul-smelling odor that comes from the mouth cavity of a person. Having bad breath means that it is a sign that the person has poor dental health habits or suffering from other health problems. Halitosis lowers self-esteem and affects personal relationships of an individual. Friends and colleagues may not feel comfortable telling this to you. One of the best ways to find out if you have bad breath is to lick the inside of your wrist, wait five seconds, and then smell it.

Causes of Bad breath:

  • Gum disease due to plaque build-up and build-up of bacteria in your mouth that causes inflammation.
  • Decay of food particles. The decay produces a sulfur compound responsible for the unpleasant odor.
  • Other diseases associated: Pneumonia or bronchitis, sinus infections, diabetes, chronic acid reflux, and liver or kidney problems.
  • Types of foods that you eat and your lifestyle:
  • Xerostomia or dry mouth-There is an increase in anaerobic bacteria reproduction.

Ways to minimize to minimize halitosis and to improve your breath: 

  • Brush your teeth at LEAST twice a day after eating and floss at least once a day. Rinse with an antibacterial mouthwash twice a day. Dentures should be removed and must be cleaned before going to sleep.
  •  Chew sugar-free gum or lozenges to prevent dryness of the mouth. Bacteria in your mouth use sugar to make acid, which breaks down your teeth which leads to bad breath. Chewing gum stimulates saliva, which is the mouth’s natural defense against plaque acids. Saliva keeps oral tissues healthy by preventing infection by controlling bacteria and fungi in the mouth.
  • Eat fruits and vegetables. One of the best ways to remove bacteria in the mouth is to eat fruits. High-fiber foods help prevent halitosis. It also helps moisten your mouth.
  •  Brush your tongue. The coating on your tongue is a host for smelly bacteria. To get rid of them, brush your tongue with your toothbrush.
  • Drink plenty of water. This will keep your mouth moist. If your mouth is dry, drink plenty of water during the day.
  •  Brush your teeth with baking soda. Baking soda helps neutralize excess acids found in the oral cavity, thus, reducing the population of bacteria.
  •  Drink green & black teas. They contain polyphenols that help eliminate sulfur compounds and reduce bacteria in your mouth.
  •  Stop smoking. Smoking can damage your gums, stain your teeth and give you bad breath.  
  • Keep your gums healthy. If you have gum disease, it will cause bad breath. Bacteria often can be found at the base of teeth, which creates an odor.
  •  Visit your dentist regularly. Your dentist can detect and treat gum problems, dry mouth, infection or abscesses that are contributing to the cause of bad breath. They can give you professional advice on how to lessen the problem.

Your dentist can recommend the best mouthwashes and toothpastes for you to neutralize volatile sulfur compounds and help control odor-causing bacteria found in the mouth. Taking proper care of your gums and teeth and visiting the dentist at LEAST twice a year are the easiest ways to avoid these issues. Always remember, preventing halitosis is always easier than treating it. 

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