Bad breath – or halitosis - is an immediate turn-off; it’s repulsive, unattractive and a sign of bad hygiene. It’s not detrimental to your health, but it may cause social issues, which can affect your self-confidence and poise. It’s also unpleasant for your close friends, colleagues and family who have to deal with it daily, so its best you get it sorted and this guide will help you.
[Read: What Causes Bad Breath?]
Causes of bad breath
There are a multitude of causes, and luckily, most can be remedied with good hygiene practice. Smoking is a significant contributory factor, but we don’t all smoke. Some foods - which are high in protein – trigger it, as do tooth infections, gum disease and gastrointestinal disorders. Alcoholic drinks can have a negative short-term effect.
[Read: Good Oral Hygiene Practices]
What can we produce from our own kitchen to improve your breath? These mouthwashes should really be long-term solutions, which can fight off bad-breath when it’s not practical to brush your teeth or manage your oral hygiene.
- A simple solution is to mix a half tablespoon of Apple-Cider Vinegar into a glass of warm water and gargle it for 10-15 seconds.
- Supplement your dollop of toothpaste with a drop of Tea Tree Oil when you are brushing or add three drops of it to a glass of warm water for an effective mouthwash. Gargle this about twice a day. NOTE: Tea-Tree Oil should not be ingested.
- Dissolve a teaspoon of baking-soda into warm water and gargle for a few seconds; this is also a viable option for ridding your tongue of bacteria.
- Dehydration – or a dry mouth – can be a cause of bad breath and the consumption of citrus fruit (oranges, lemons, grapefruits, which all yield high levels of citric acid) will help to prevent this. The citric acid stimulates the production of saliva in the mouth, and one of the functions of saliva is the suppression of bacteria, many of which cause the bad breath. Eating an apple daily is also recommended.
- Chewing mints through the day is an effective real-time solution, but you can also try cardamom or sunflower seeds. They work hard to sweeten your breath, and leave a long-lasting aromatic flavour in your mouth which others can pick up.
- Drink tea made Fenugreek (methi) seeds or chew the cloves.
- These are home-made remedies which can negate the causes of bad-breath. However, brushing your teeth, flossing between them and generally looking after your oral hygiene are the most efficient ways of maintaining clean, fresh breath.
Read more articles on Understand Oral Health Conditions
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