There’s no way around it – bad breath is embarrassing. Chronic bad breath can seem like a nemesis, constantly foiling your plans and preventing you from engaging in social activities. We know what to avoid food-wise: anchovies, onions, garlic, etc., but what else can you do? Consider these helpful tips to help you overcome bad breath and start smiling again!
1. Brush and floss daily
This seems like a no-brainer, but let’s be honest. How often do you really floss? If you’re like most people, then it’s about as often as you flip your mattress. Debris builds up between teeth, decays, and emits a foul odor. Flossing removes the debris, and it’s absolutely essential for fresh breath.
2. Scrape your tongue
Bacteria hides beneath your taste buds, but a gentle, cost-effective tongue scraper can effectively remove a good percentage of this bacteria. Tongue scrapers last for years, and it might just be the most important thing you do to eliminate odor-causing bacteria.
3. Replace your toothbrush
Your toothbrush’s damp bristles can become a host for bacteria over time. Replace your toothbrush every 2 to 3 months for a fresh approach to fighting bad breath.
4. Use alcohol-free mouthwash
Buyers beware! Many popular mouthwashes contain alcohol, which can mask odors, but ultimately exacerbates the problem by contributing to dry mouth. Consider using an alcohol-free rinse or a baking-soda solution to actually rid your mouth of bacteria.
5. Drink water
Sipping water throughout the day can wash away debris and prevent dehydration, a common cause of bad breath.
6. Go green
Certain herbs and spices act as natural breath fresheners that kill odiferous bacteria. Try adding fresh mint, parsley, coriander, tarragon, rosemary, or cardamom to your diet. Steep these herbs in hot water for a few minutes and enjoy a breath-freshening after-dinner elixir.
7. Introduce vitamin-rich foods
Studies show that foods rich in vitamin D (yogurt, cheese, milk) and Vitamin C (citrus fruits, berries, melons) can counter bad breath and create an environment inhospitable to bacteria.
8. Avoid liquid offenders
Minimize your intake of notorious bad-breath allies like coffee, wine, and whiskey.
9. Chew sugar-free gum
While this isn’t a permanent solution, sugar-free gum can stimulate the saliva glands and provide temporary relief. And because it’s sugar-free, it won’t contribute to decay, which can heighten the problem.