Bad breath, also known as halitosis, can cause low self esteem, anxiety and social distress. To avoid these terrible side effects and leave bad breath behind, follow these simple tips and tricks to prevent bad breath from ever occurring.
One: Brush Your Teeth Twice A Day
Healthy, consistent oral hygiene is the greatest way to prevent bad breath. Brushing your teeth twice a day is crucial to cultivating great oral health and fresh breath. Food debris, plaque and gingivitis are the greatest culprits that cause bad breath and brushing is the first tactic in your hygiene routine that keeps your teeth clean and white and your breath smelling nice and fresh.
When brushing your teeth, it is important to use a dentist-recommended toothpaste, preferably one with a fluoride or baking soda that kills germs and strengthens your teeth. As you brush, you should focus on brushing every part of your mouth – not just your teeth. Food particles and bacteria causing bad breath build up on your teeth, gums, cheeks and tongue. As a result, a thorough brushing lasts 2 to 3 minutes and will include gentle brushing of the gums and cheeks, and the scraping of the tongue.
Brushing twice a day, once in the morning (especially after that cup of coffee) and once at night is a solid foundation to keeping your mouth clean and fresh. In addition, brushing after each meal will further prevent any bad breath that may result from the food consumed.
Two: Floss Once A Day
Flossing, or cleaning between your teeth, is essential to fighting bacterial build up known as plaque, which prevents cavities and bad breath. The pockets in between your teeth are rarely cleaned solely by brushing, and can become havens for odor-producing plaque and food particles. It is important to remove this bacteria and food debris with floss, a waterpik or other interdental brushes at least once a day.
Three: Rinse Your Mouth Twice A Day
In addition to brushing and flossing, regularly rinsing your mouth with mouthwash improves oral hygiene and helps stop bad breath by preventing cavities and gingivitis. Mouthwash with antibacterial agents kills the bacteria most likely causing your bad breath.
Four: Avoid Dry Mouth
Dry mouth is a common medical condition called xerostomia (zeer–o-STOE-me-uh) known to contribute to foul smells and bad breath. In fact, dry mouth is the most common reason for waking up with bad breath – an experience known as morning breath. Dry mouth means that the glands that produce your saliva are functioning at a reduced rate, either caused by some sort of condition or by habitually breathing through your mouth (as is often the case when people sleep).
A lack of saliva production increases the risk and intensity of bad breath, because saliva is the mouth’s natural cleansing agent that breaks down food and fights bacteria. To avoid dry mouth, do the following:
- Drink plenty of water throughout the day
- Chew sugar free gum
- Eat an apple, carrot, or celery stick (these foods demand an increased amount of saliva to break down therefore encourage saliva production)
For chronic dry mouth, some doctor-prescribed oral medication may also be needed.
Five: Visit Your Dentist Regularly
Finally, visiting your dentist regularly – every 6 months – is the best way to ensure positive oral hygiene and prevent bad breath. Regular dental cleanings and checkups allow your dentist to help you prevent and diagnose dental problems like cavities, infections and gum disease – all of which can lead to bad breath.
Our in-house team of dental specialists at The Steele Creek Dentist in Charlotte are ready to provide you with exceptional, comfortable cleanings and help you prevent your bad breath. Schedule your next appointment with The Steele Creek Dentist today. Same-day appointments are available when you call (704) 800-0252.