Halitosis or bad breath can be embarrassing and in some cases may even cause anxiety. You would have noticed people tend to step backwards while talking to you or they try to cover their nose seemingly casually.
It is not that bad breath which you have in the morning due to those bad bacteria in your mouth. It is that smelly breath which is with you for the whole day to embarrass you as well as others who try to talk to you.
Before going for any home remedies for bad breath, you should check with your doctor to rule out the possibility of any gum disease or tooth decay as well as other conditions such as respiratory or sinus infections, bronchitis, diabetes or malfunctioning of the liver or kidney. These medical conditions may be the actual culprit behind your halitosis.
Bad dental hygiene is one of the main reasons of bad breath. When food particles are stuck between tooth cavities they can smell bad. Gum disease-gingivitis- is also a major cause and a dentist should be consulted at the earliest. Certain food that contains strong pungent seasoning with onions and garlic cause a bad breath. At times when the mouth has been closed for very long the bacteria grows and begins to stink.
Fasting causes bad breath. Constipation and an upset stomach also cause bad breath. Other causes include dry mouth, sinus inflammation, medications, tobacco use, digestive disorders, etc.
Bad breath in young children may be cause by foreign body, such as small toy or piece of food lodged in nostrils.
- Regularly brush and floss your teeth daily two times. Clean your mouth thoroughly.
- Always brush your teeth with a fluoride toothpaste to eliminate plaque and food debris
- Using floss will help in the removal of food and bacteria that is trapped between your teeth, as the trapped food is not going to smell good. Sometimes bad breath may lead to periodontal disease.
- Use a tongue cleaner. Clean or brush your tongue properly, as the bacteria left behind on your tongue leads to bad breath.
- Ditch wearing your dentures during sleep, clean them thoroughly and leave them outside to dry until next morning.
- Drinking lots of water will help you get rid of bad breath. This helps you a lot as, the main reason for bad breath is dehydration. Drinking water helps you ward off the bacteria in your mouth throughout the day.
- Smelly breath may be caused due to a dry mouth. Generally, dry mouth is caused as a result of dead cells decomposition, which may cause bad odor. Saliva always helps you keep your mouth clean. The antibacterial action of saliva helps you wash off trapped food particles and also neutralizes bacteria. Saliva flow will be less in the nights; this is the reason why you have bad breath smells after waking up early in the morning. Saliva production gets stimulated if you suck some sugarless mints or chew gum.
- Make a habit of using mouthwash, as it always keeps your mouth wet and prevents your mouth from smelling badly.
- Avoid chewing or smoking tobacco-based products, as they may lead to bad smell in your mouth.
(An interesting advertising campaign for Colgate)
Drinking black or green tea in the morning instead of coffee can help get rid of your morning breath. Black and green teas contain polyphenols, which are powerful antioxidants that fight bacteria growth in your mouth, thereby improving the smell of your breath.
Gargle salt water
Gargling salt water will help you in eliminating bacteria present in your tonsils and throat. Crystal salt is highly recommended for salt water gargle.
Mix ½ teaspoon salt to 1 teaspoon of mustard oil and massage the gums with this, it tightens the gums and prevents gum disease and keep away bad breath.
Baking soda with toothpaste
Baking soda works by changing the pH (acidity) level in your mouth and this change does not support the growth of the bacteria that cause bad breath. Add some amount on your toothbrush and brush with it. Then wash your mouth with water. A second alternative will be to opt for a toothpaste which already contain baking soda.
Tea tree oil with toothpaste
A toothpaste with tea tree oil added to it, can be an effective remedy for bad breath. You need to add a drop of the oil to your toothpaste before brushing. You can also prepare a mouthwash with tea tree oil by adding 3 drops to a cup of warm water. Gargle this solution for two to three times daily, if possible after each meal.
Dry mouth often causes bad breath. If the cause of bad breath is dry mouth, then eat citrus fruits like orange and lemon. Citric acid, present in these fruits, stimulates the saliva, which in turn, aids in the suppression of some mouth bacteria, responsible for causing bad breath.
Unripe guava, being rich in tannic, phosphoric, oxalic and malic acids, is a useful remedy for halitosis. It also contains vital minerals like manganese, calcium, and oxalate. It not only cures bad breath, but also stands as a remedy for bleeding gums.
To get rid of bad breath, chew some cardamom seeds. Its aromatic flavor acts as a breath freshener. This is an effective home remedy for bad breath.
Supplement with Zinc
Deficiency of zinc mineral leads to poor healing, halitosis, immunity and inflammation. Intake of zinc supplements helps you maintaining a bacteria-free and clean mouth. Some of the foods that are rich in zinc are cacao, pumpkin, gourd seeds, organ meats, and some mouthwashes with antimicrobial action help you in getting rid of harmful germs.
Foods You Need to Avoid
- Onions, hot peppers and garlic.
- Coffee, beer, wine and whiskey. These items top the list of liquid offenders.
- Refined carbohydrates like white sugar, white bread and products prepared with them.
- Meat and eggs.
- Some fishes like anchovies and seaweed are high in ‘fishy’ amine odors.
Bad breath can not only put you down in a social situation, but it actually sends out a signal of poor oral hygiene and health. It may indicate that your mouth has turned into a safe playground for the bacteria. Thus, it may actually serve as an early indicator allowing you to take a proactive approach.