How to Get Rid of Bad Breath

How to get rid of bad breath

If you think you only get bad breath in the morning, think again. Certain foods, habits, and illnesses may cause your breath to smell. According to dentists, 90% of cases originate from prolonged stagnation and bacterial fermentation of food debris that form into plaque. Even babies can get bad breath when some milk is left on the tongue.  Here is a list of things that cause bad breath and what can be done about it.

The Culprits

1.  Food and drinks

Alcoholic beverages, especially beer (due to yeast) - odor remains in mouth for an hour or more after drinking

Garlic, uncooked onions, leeks - odor remains for 10 to 12 hours after eating

Spicy foods

Coffee, milk, cola, and other drinks with sugar

Sticky and sweet foods - it takes only 20 minutes after eating these for plaque to form

2.  Smoking cigarettes and tobacco - odor from smoking tobasso is worse, remaining in the mouth for 10 to 15 hours after smoking

3.  Medications

Diet pills - cause dry mouth, which in turn causes bad breath

Cod liver oil

4.  Systemic and health problems


Liver, kidney, lung, and blood diseases - includes colds; phlegm is a main odor carrier

Bedridden state - food stays longer in the mouth of a bedridden patient than in that of a person who is mobile

5.  Mouth diseases and other oral conditions

Periodontitis (inflammation of the bone, connective tissue, and gums)

Early gingivitis (inflammation of the gums)

Untreated cavities

Infection of the pulp inside tooth

Mouth ulcers or sores

Coated tongue - food is left on the tongue, causing the tongue to be whitish in color

Dry mouth - caused by breathing through the mouth

What to Do

If you can't brush your teeth right away, use temporary remedies such as mints, mouthwashes, and breath fresheners.  At the very least, wash your mouth with water.

Chew sugar-free gum to stimulate salivation.

Drink lots of water to wash away dead cells, sugar, and food debris.

Eat a nutritious and well-balanced diet rich in fruits and vegetables. Some foods neutralize acid well, like cheddar cheese, unflavored popcorn, peanuts, yogurt, lean meat, fish, and vegetables. Don't eat a lot of sticky and sweet foods.

Brush and floss your teeth at least twice a day, especially before sleeping. Don't forget to brush your tongue and use a tongue scraper to get rid of bacteria. For babies, gently wash the tongue with a piece of wet cotton wound around your forefinger.

Visit your dentist for a checkup and professional cleaning every six months.

If you breathe through your mouth, see a doctor to treat what may be chronic nasal congestion or postnasal drip.


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