Stop bad breath and you might find your social life improves and people want to get closer to you.
Bad breath or halitosis can ruin your social life, and if you are single and starting to date again, it’s the last thing you want to be worrying about. Unpleasant mouth odors have ruined many a potentially romantic evening and stopped a would-be long term relationship in its tracks.
Whether you are single or married. Whether you are male or female, feeling confident that your breath is fresh is extremely important for your self esteem. Someone with clean fresh breath is more likely to be kissed than someone whose mouth smells like an ash tray or worse. And even if being kissed is the last thing on your mind, nobody wants to have smelly breath.
Often halitosis is purely and simply a question of personal hygiene. Brushing teeth and gums regularly, flossing every day and brushing or scraping the tongue may eliminate all problems and, if this fails, using herbs and seeds can also help stop bad breath.
Although eating strong foods as mentioned below can temporarily make your breath smell strong, once foods like garlic and onions have been processed by the body and passed through the liver, their odor will not be expelled through the mouth but through perspiration. A bad smell when we exhale might coming from an infection in the sinuses or might indicate a serious health problem such as diabetes or liver disease.
Therefore, If after following the advice below, the problem persists, it would be worth visiting your doctor to make sure the problem does not come from a health condition or your medication.
Sweeten Your Breath in Seven Easy Steps
So what can you do to ensure that your mouth smells fresh and to check if you have bad breath.
If you have someone you are close to (friend or family) you can always ask them to check your breath, but if you don’t like to impose this on someone, the next best thing is to clean your hands, then rub a clean finger over the tongue as far back as you can without making yourself retch. Wipe the finger on the back of your other hand and wait a few minutes and then smell your hand.
If your hand does not smell good, there are many easy steps you can take to stop bad breath. Start by brushing and flossing your teeth. You can use toothpaste of course, but you might like to try using some natural remedies to both clean the teeth and sweeten the breath.
There are many products you can use - my old mum used to say salt, soot and sand. but i don't think you need to go that far. Salt can be useful for eliminating bacteria. I use a toothbrush i buy in Switzerland called Dentrefice de Berger (Shepherds' Toothpaste which is clay based and contains herbs to strengthen the gums and purify the mouth, It helps eliminate bad breath and is mildly abrasive, so it eliminates superficial stains.
There are many others on the market with a base of aloe vera or other natural ingredients. I will try and do a short review on the various different products and where you can buy them at a later date.
In the meantime, I included some good products available through Amazon below and, suggest that you follow the following advice. Besides the visits to the hygienist most of these methods will not cost you much. You may want to buy a scrapper for the tongue. These are available from Amazon and i will include other sources when i do the product reviews.
1. Brush Regularly
A good brushing followed by flossing will help remove any food which gets stuck between the teeth and starts to rot and thereby stop bad breath in its tracks.
Brushing regularly is the best thing you can do for your teeth, your gums and your general health. It will also help keep your mouth and teeth clean and thereby help eliminate unwanted odors. A good electric toothbrush, such as braun oral hygiene professional or any from the braun range is a great investment.
Start by eliminating all food that may be lodged in the teeth and gums and is easily removed. Then clean the teeth themselves, working round from middle to back along the inside and then back on the outside of your teeth, doing first one side of your upper teeth then the other, then do the same with the bottom teeth. Make sure you clean around the back of the wisdom or upper molars at the far inside of your mouth. Finish by cleaning the biting edge of your teeth so that every surface has been thoroughly cleaned. While you are doing this make sure that your toothbrush massages the gums as well as brushing the teeth or otherwise repeat the process, this time paying attention to the gums.
Once a week use a paste of bicarbonate of soda and water to help remove any superficial stains like coffee, tea, wine, cola and cigarette stains.
2. Floss Regularly
You should floss at least once a day after cleaning, preferably before retiring for the night. Flossing can help to stop bad breath by eliminating food between the teeth which bacteria can feed on.
Floss comes in diferent types and flavours and is either waxed or unwaxed. If you have crowded teeth it is better to buy a single filament waxed or silk signle filament floss, which will be able to slide easily between the teeth and not get caught in fillings.
Be gentle when working the floss into the space between gum and tooth and take care not to cut the gums with the floss, especially when the floss gets caught on fillings. If you have any inflammation in the gums they may bleed, either when being brushed or during flossing. However, this should not deter you. The procedure will eliminate the inflammation and harden your gums and bleeding will soon be a thing of the past.
This will make it easier to get into the flossing habit and this will greatly improve the health of teeth and gums and eliminate mouth odors.
3. Clean Your Tongue
Finally, in our culture people often don't brush or scrape their tongues, but in places like India where they eat highly spiced food, this is part of their daily hygienic routine.
Buy a tongue scraper or tongue brush and scrape or brush your tongue after each meal, but at least once a day before sleeping. After doing this rinse out your mouth with clear water and spit out to eliminate any food particles or dry cells which have been removed. This is one of the best ways to eliminate bad smells.
Cleaning your tongue will rid your mouth of bacteria which might be causing your mouth odor problem. It is a sure fire way to stop bad breath.
4. Drink Water
Drink plenty of walk in order to keep from becoming dehydrated and this will help keep your mouth hydrated too. A dry mouth encourages dead skin cells to accumulate for bacteria to feed on. Drinking water also help wash out food particles from the mouth and, of course, this can help stop bad breath from decomposing food matter.
5. Avoid Sweet Sticky Foods
Avoid sweet sticky foods that stick to your teeth and promote the build-up of plaque. Plaque is the enemy of your tooth and gum health and can promote early aging through the loss of teeth, often due to gum disease. Eliminating sugar from your diet can help stop bad breath. Sugar is bad for you anyway, so eliminating it from your diet will improve your overall health and delay aging.
6. Eliminate Strong Odors
Strong tasting food can cause bad breath as well as consuming alcohol and smoking. Best solution is not to smoke, drink only in moderation and avoid strong smelling foods like onions or garlic if you know that you are going to be in situations when you need your breath to be fresh and sweet smelling. If you can't avoid this, use a good quality mouth wash or mouth spray to stop bad breath or at least mask the odors.
While food can be a cause of bad breath, either temporarily, when we eat strong smelling food or because food is lodged between the teeth and being eaten by bacteria causing a bad odor, not eating might also cause halitosis. Going too long between meals also gives an ideal environment for the proliferation of food eating bacteria. Not having enough saliva to cleanse the mouth properly is also a problem which can cause bad odors to accumulate in the mouth. If there is not enough saliva the rotting food is not removed naturally. Some drugs also lead to a dry mouth and provoke similar problems. Chewing sugar-free gum or sucking mints can help to increase saliva levels and there are some sprays which can also help the problem.
7. Use Mother Nature's Remedies for the Best Results
Chlorophyll is a powerful breath freshener which is found in herbs like parsley, basil and coriander (that is cilantro for Americans). You can also buy chlorophyll liquid or tablets containing chlorophyll.
Chewing dill or cardomom or anise seeds is also helpful. Cardamom contains an antiseptic called cineole which kills the bacteria which cause bad odor and thereby stop bad breath from ocurring. You can chew the seeds and then spit them out.
Anise or Dill can be used to make a tea which then can be drunk or used as a mouth wash. Peppermint or Spearmint tea also helps fight halitotis because it contains a bacteria-killing anticeptic.
Indian restaurants often serve a dish of herbs and spices after a meal to help freshen the breath and aid digestion and the mint tea served in many French restaurants has the same effect.
8. Get Professional Cleaning
Get your teeth professionally cleaned by a hygienist as often as you can afford to, preferably at least once every six months, especially if you have crowded teeth. This will let your dentist keep an eye on your teeth and intervene with necessary measures before problems develop.
Some Products You May Find Helpful
The following products can help in the fight to stop bad breath.
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