Bad breath. Just those two words can make even the rich and powerful cringe with discomfort. Someone can tell you your clothes don’t match, and it’s no big deal. They can tell you you’ve got pit stains, and it’s mildly embarrassing. But if someone whispers that you’ve got bad breath, it’s enough to get you scrambling for a breath mint.
This is a good thing, since social pressure keeps us all from knocking each-other out with terrible breath. However, there’s no reason to feel overly embarrassed. As a matter of fact, the majority of people have to deal with bad breath at some point.
So, how do you keep your breath as fresh as the mountain breeze? Here’s a guide to how bad breath happens, and how you can keep it at bay. Let’s get going!
Why Does Bad Breath Happen?
As with many bodily processes, bad breath can be caused by a wide variety of things. That said, the number one cause is bacteria breaking down in the back of the mouth. This can be kept at bay with regular brushing and flossing, to remove food particles that bacteria feed on.
Brushing your teeth will also remove particles from, well, your teeth! This doesn’t just keep them from smelling; it also helps prevent cavities. That’s why dentists are so gung-ho about brushing your teeth, they even give you a toothbrush after your visit.
That said, there are several other potential causes of bad breath. Let’s take a quick look at each of them:
- Eating stinky foods. If you eat a lot of fish, garlic, or other foods that have a powerful aroma, you can expect to have bad breath. These foods have an overwhelmingly strong taste and smell that sticks around for a long time.
- Drinking alcohol. A glass of wine or a bottle of beer with dinner isn’t going to do much harm. But if you drink a lot of alcohol, the smell can linger in your stomach for more than a day. Even brushing your teeth or using a mint won’t help, since the smell is coming up from your stomach.
- Tobacco use. Needless to say, the smell of cigarettes will linger on your clothes. But even if you brush your teeth, take a shower, and change your clothes, the smell will still linger on your breath for several hours. If you live in a state where other smoking products are legal, don’t think you get a free pass. They will also make your breath smell. Chewing tobacco has a similar effect, but to a lesser extent. Not only that, but tobacco is bad for you anyway.
- Some medications. Certain prescription medications break down in the body and produce smelly chemicals, which are expelled through the lungs. If you think this might be causing your bad breath, ask your doctor about any side effects of medication you’re taking.
- Some diseases. The flu, the common cold, and ordinary stomach bugs can all cause you to have bad breath. Sinus infections, or any other type of airway infection, can have a similar effect.
- Liver or kidney disease. Now, don’t panic and start thinking you have a horrible disease. Almost all cases of bad breath are caused by one of the relatively harmless things we’ve already listed. That said, if you’ve eliminated everything else, talk to your doctor about your bad breath. They’ll be able to look at your other symptoms and risk factors and tell you if this is even a concern.
Remember Good Dental Hygiene
So, how do you prevent bad breath? As we already mentioned, the most common cause of bad breath is poor hygiene. So start with proper, everyday brushing and flossing. Do both of these things twice a day, for two minutes each. Not only will you avoid bad breath, but you’ll be doing the best you can to prevent other dental problems.
When you’re brushing, keep in mind that some toothpastes are better than others. If you’re concerned about your overall well being, consider Dr. Brite Fresh Breath Toothpaste. Not only will it put a fresh blast of mint in each breath, it’s also made from all-natural ingredients, so it promotes your overall wellness.
If you struggle with bad breath despite rigorous oral hygiene, think about using a tongue scraper. They have to be used properly to be effective. Make sure to read the instructions carefully, and ask your dental hygienist for help if you need it. However, they can remove bacteria from the back of your tongue, where it can be difficult to reach with a toothbrush.
When you’re finished brushing and using your tongue scraper, a good mouthwash can be a great way to finish up. It will help remove any remaining residue from your brush or scraper. In addition, it will both soothe your mouth and add a refreshing scent.
That said, most commercial mouthwashes contain alcohol, which can dry out your mouth. They also contain other artificial chemicals that might not be the best for your health. The Dr. Brite Fresh Breath Kit includes all-natural toothpaste, mouthwash, breath spray, and more. All of it’s designed to be good for your body and good for the planet. It even includes an oral healing spray to boost your mouth’s own natural healing capabilities.
Finally, it’s critical to visit your dentist on a regular basis. Their regular cleanings do a lot more than a simple toothbrush, and are critical for long-term dental health. Not only that, but a dentist can provide other services, such as X-rays, to detect oral problems before they become unmanageable.
Remember, bad breath might just be a sign that you ate too much Italian bread or drank too much wine with dinner. But if it’s ongoing, it can be a sign of more serious issues. If you’re struggling with bad breath or any other dental problem, talk to your dentist about it.
What Other Remedies are There?
For many health conditions, the first piece of advice is: “Drink plenty of water.” The same rule applies here. This can stave off dehydration, which can make bad breath worse. As a general rule, the more saliva you’re producing, the less you need to worry about bad breath.
Water can also be used for a simple rinse. It’s not quite as effective as brushing your teeth or even mouthwash. But if you need a quick rinse, it’s certainly better than nothing.
If rinsing and spitting isn’t practical, you can always carry a breath spray. Keep in mind that just like with mouthwash, many commercial breath sprays are alcohol-based. Dr. Brite Fresh Breath Spray, on the other hand, uses aloe juice, vegetable glycerin, and peppermint oil as its main ingredients. This all-natural formulation gives your breath a burst of freshness without the need for any artificial chemicals.
If you want a do-it-yourself remedy, some fresh or aromatic herbs can do the same thing. Parsley and mint are popular favorites, although your imagination is the only limit. If you have a burning desire for sage-scented breath, knock yourself out! Just make sure not to swallow the herbs, though. In most cases, swallowing any significant quantity can make your stomach upset.
Finally, there’s always the old go-to method of carrying mints or gum. In and of itself, there’s nothing wrong with this. As an added bonus, you can even offer a mint or a piece of gum to another person who’s breathing on you. Look for sugar-free options, though. Sugar is food for bacteria, which can end up making your breath worse.