If you go to any convenience or grocery store, you’ll see aisles of products aimed at mitigating or preventing bad breath. Mints, gums, and mouthwashes are all designed to give your breath a minty fresh aroma, but do they work?
In the short term, these products can effectively mask any unpleasant odor coming from your mouth. However, they don’t do anything to address the core problem, so they’re not good for the long term. Instead, it’s better to understand why you have bad breath and plan accordingly.
Fortunately, we’ve compiled a list of top tips to keep bad breath at bay so you never have to worry.
What Causes Bad Breath?
There are quite a few reasons why you might have bad breath. If you try the tips we outline below and nothing seems to combat the problem, you could have a mouth infection or dental issue. In this case, it’s best to see a dentist in Vero Beach to determine what’s going on so you can find permanent relief.
Beyond an infection, some common reasons for bad breath can include:
- Smelly Foods – Foods like garlic or fish can linger in your mouth, causing your breath to smell like them for a while after eating.
- Poor Dental Hygiene – If you don’t brush your teeth regularly, plaque can build up on the surface and start to smell over time.
- Dry Mouth – Saliva does an excellent job of keeping your mouth relatively clean, including washing away odorous elements. If you experience dry mouth often, you could wind up with chronic bad breath. This is also why morning breath is a thing, because your mouth dries out while you sleep.
6 Ways to Combat Bad Breath
Thankfully, bad breath doesn’t have to be a long-term problem. With a little proactive planning, you can make sure your mouth smells clean and fresh all day long. Here are six ways to control or prevent bad breath.
Brush and Floss Daily
Ideally, you can brush your teeth about 45 minutes to an hour after meals. If that’s not possible, you should still brush once in the morning and again in the evening. Flossing daily can also remove food particles that get stuck between teeth and linger in the gums. The longer you go between cleanings, the worse your breath will get.
Brush and Scrape Your Tongue
Your tongue can also harbor bacteria and other smelly elements, so it’s important to brush your tongue after you’re done with your teeth. If that doesn’t seem to remove the problem, scraping your tongue with a specialized scraper can often do the trick. Daily scraping can help mitigate bad breath, although you may need it more often, depending on the severity of the problem.
Use a Tea Mouth Rinse
Most mouthwashes use alcohol to clean between the teeth, which dries your mouth. In many cases, using mouthwash can actually worsen the problem by removing helpful saliva.
Instead, it’s better to create your own mouth rinse by adding a few drops of peppermint oil or black tea. The elements of the tea can actually inhibit bacterial growth, keeping your mouth clean and fresh for longer.
Dry mouth is a relatively uncommon problem, but it can often happen if you’re dehydrated. Drinking lots of water throughout the day can help keep your saliva production in check, so your mouth doesn’t smell bad.
Eat More Fruits and Veggies
Most fruits and vegetables don’t produce an odor, so eating them won’t impact your breath negatively. Plus, eating foods stimulates saliva production, helping to wash away any smelly particles that might be in your mouth. Fibrous foods like apples, carrots, and celery are ideal, too, because they can remove some plaque while you eat. However, they’re not a substitute for brushing.
Avoid Tobacco Products
Smoking can cause a variety of health problems, including periodontal disease and bad breath. Overall, there are no upsides to smoking, but if you want to prevent bad breath, you should avoid the habit altogether.
Get a Healthier Smile (and Better Breath) With Vero Implants and Periodontics
At Vero Implants and Periodontics, we believe you should have the best smile possible. Regular checkups can help us spot potential diseases or infections, including those that may cause bad breath. Oral hygiene is a lot more vital than you may realize, which is why you should schedule an appointment with us today. We’re your dentist in Vero Beach, FL, so let us take care of your smile!