No one likes bad breath. Most cases of bad breath can be traced back to poor dental hygiene and overall oral health care. Most people know to floss, use mouthwash and brush your teeth daily to remove leftover food particles and bacteria that can cause bad breath, but did you know there is more you can do to help keep bad breath away?
Continue reading for tips on keeping your breath fresh.
What is Halitosis?
Bad breath, also known as halitosis, has quite a few causes and it's not the extra garlic you’re adding to your meals. Eating pungent food, chronic dry mouth, gum disease and tobacco use are common contributors to less than ideal breath. Halitosis can also show up from underlying medical conditions or as a side effect of medication.
How to Get Rid of Bad Breath
There are many things you can do to help keep your breath fresh, including:
- Brush twice a day with fluoride toothpaste for two minutes each time – remember to replace your toothbrush every three months or after you are sick
- Brush your tongue!
- Never share toothbrushes, even with your children or significant other
- Floss daily
- If you have dental appliances such as dentures, retainers and mouth guards, clean them daily
- After eating, rinse with an antibacterial mouthwash to kill bad bacteria
- Limit your intake of sweetened drinks like soda, sweet tea, and alcohol
- Prevent dry mouth by drinking plenty of water throughout the day
- Snack on healthy, fresh and crunchy fruits and vegetables like apples and celery
- Quit smoking and/or using smokeless tobacco products (including vaping)!
- Have routine dental cleanings and check-ups with the dentist to remove bacteria buildup under the gum line and tartar that can't be removed with a toothbrush and dental floss alone
When wearing braces it is especially important to keep your mouth clean because traditional braces harbor food particles and residue. If you're out and about and can't clean your mouth after eating, you can rinse with water, or chew sugarless gum or sugar-free mints. These boost saliva production, your mouth's natural bacteria-fighting resource, which helps rinse away bacteria and bits of food.