“We should have a way of telling people they have bad breath without hurting their feelings. Well, I’m bored. Let’s go brush our teeth. Or, I’ve got to make a phone call. Hold this gum in your mouth.” – Brad Stine
Foul breath or Halitosis lowers your self-esteem, confidence and even disturbs your everyday life.
Are you a victim of bad breath?
A disease commonly found though embarrassing, bad breath is a health issue that affects more than 35 percent of people across the world. The foul smell that the mouth produces from the cavity is termed as fetor oris, another name for Halitosis. It is caused by the sulfur-producing anaerobic bacterium that multiplies in the throat, tonsil area and under the surface of tongue. The bacterium is inevitable for the digestion for it helps breaking down of proteins into amino acids. Where you have any oral issues or health problems, the bacteria increases manifold feasting on the proteins that are present in the unhealthy oral tissues, blood and phlegm. The excretion of the bacteria contains hydrogen sulfide, methyl mercaptan and other compounds causing bad breath.
10 effective ways to stop bad breath
You can try and do away with bad breath; here are the ten simple ways to prevent bad breath.
1. Practice oral hygiene:
Oral hygiene is the most effective and simple practice to be free of bad breath. You have to brush your teeth twice a day i.e. morning and night and also do not forget to clean your mouth after each meal and floss after eating meat, fish or dairy products.
2. Have fiber rich food and proper diet:
Food plays a significant role in controlling bad breath. Taking food that is rich in fiber will help you prevent bad odor in the breath. Avoid eating processed food, ice cream, sweets and carbohydrates.
3. Treat mouth dryness:
If you have mouth dryness, it is advisable to use a saliva substitute to moisten your mouth all through the day. Some effective, natural remedies for the oral care are zinc gluconate, aloe vera, glycyrrhizin acid, xylitol, CoQ10, K12 and M18.
4. Drink black and green tea:
By drinking black and/or green tea, you can get rid of bad breath. The presence of polyphenols in green and black teas will help eliminate the sulfur and reduce bacterium present in the oral cavity.
5. Do not use mouthwash that contains sugar and alcohol:
Sugar and alcohol present in the mouthwash are sure to help the growth of bacteria, which will worsen the condition in the long run. Moreover, consuming alcohol makes your mouth dry and thus causes bad breath. There are many oral wash lotions and mouthwashes available and they give satisfactory results.
6. Stop smoking:
Smokers are prone to develop periodontal diseases and other oral diseases, which may cause bad breath. It is observed that smokers are at higher risk of bad breath due to dry mouth and oral ulcers. The tobacco in cigarettes is also susceptible to developing other habits such as alcohol consumption and chronic anxiety. You need necessary medication to avoid mouth dryness.
7. Solve sleep apnea and snoring:
Breathing through your nose and snoring or sleep apnea problems can cause mouth dryness leading to bad breath.
8. Drink water:
Water is “The elixir of life”; it helps prevent innumerable health conditions such as acidity, constipation and mouth dryness. You can keep your mouth moist drinking plenty of water and it will help reduce bad breath.
9. Use natural mouth freshener:
Some spices like cloves, aniseed and fennel seeds have medicinal properties to fight bacteria causing bad breath. You can keep a few pieces of them handy to prevent halitosis.
10. Hygienic dentures:
If you are using dentures, wash your dentures at least once a day; practice the same hygiene and oral care that you do with your natural teeth.
When should you worry about bad breath?
People experience bad breath at certain times and no doubt it causes them unpleasantness. Though bad odor in your breath is not considered serious, it may become a cause to worry when you fail to control it even after good dental hygiene like rinsing your mouth and teeth with mouthwash, which is essentially sugar-free; brushing your teeth twice in a day; and flossing. No doubt, it is a vexing problem and you should consult your dentist immediately.
What should I do if I have bad breath?
It is true that “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” A little precaution is important to avoid crisis. To prevent bad breath you should follow right and healthy food habits, as well as oral hygiene. Food, health conditions, poor oral hygiene and dry mouth cause bad breath.
Having a Proper Diagnosis
The first step to stop bad breath is to identify its cause, which involves visiting a dentist or seeking an expert diagnosis. When you visit your dentist be very clear and discuss everything related to your health such as pre-medical history, treatment you underwent, your food habits, etc. It is important that your dentist understand your present health condition to determine the causes of your bad breath and recommend the best treatment.
A halimeter, which is a portable sulfide gas monitor, is an instrument used to diagnose bad breath clinically. With it, you can have complete analysis of the presence of hydrogen sulfide in parts per million (ppm) in your breath. The halimeter uses electrochemical voltammetric sensor that gives complete information to clinicians to assess your mouth air.
In many cases, bad breath is triggered by diseases such as diabetes, kidney disease, cancer, lung disease, liver disease, sinusitis, pneumonia, bronchitis, respiratory tract infections, metabolic disorders, gum diseases, and so on. It is therefore advisable to undergo a complete check up to eliminate them.
Lead a happy life
Bad breath may lower your self-esteem and disturb your everyday life. It may even affect your personal relationship. It is quite challenging to find bad odor in the breath. Moreover, you will find it uncomfortable to discuss it with others. Plan a regular visit to your dentist, follow a bad-breath test and find out if you have foul breath. Above all, follow a healthy lifestyle, good diet, good hygiene, proper health care and dental care, and regular dental checkups to do away with bad breath.