Tuesday, July 26th, 2016

7 ways to prevent bad breath

Rajkumari Tankha | July 26, 2016 10:50 am Print
There could be many reasons for bad breath like smoking or consuming tobacco products, eating garlic or onion, indigestion etc but bad oral hygiene tops the list

Bad breath : For representational purposes only

Do you often suffer from bad breath? Don’t ignore it, for it could be a symptom of something serious coming up on your health front.

Medically called halitosis, bad breath affects over 80 million people across the world. There could be many reasons for bad breath like smoking or consuming tobacco products, eating garlic or onion, indigestion etc., but bad oral hygiene tops the list.

Since bad oral hygiene is one of the top reasons for people having bad breath, we will first talk about the ways and means of maintaining good oral hygiene. These are:

Brush teeth twice a day
Lack of brushing results in build-up of plaque which, in turn results in growth of bacteria in the mouth. This causes bad breath. Brushing after meals or at least twice a day prevents plaque buildup on teeth.

Floss once a day
Regular flossing helps dislodge food particles that get stuck in unreachable parts of the mouth like spaces between the teeth. The problem is more when the gap between the teeth is negligible. If flossing is not done, the food particles stuck between teeth decay and become potent grounds for bacterial growth causing bad breath.

A good mouth wash is must
Mouthwashes not only leave a sweet smell and make you feel fresh, but also effectively kill bacteria present in the mouth that are responsible for bad breath.

Rinse your mouth frequently
Swish water in your mouth every time you eat something as this dislodges food particles that get stuck in difficult places in the mouth. This is must after each eating, and not just after breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Scrape your tongue
Not just teeth, but the tongue also needs to be cleaned regularly. Use a good scraper to clean your tongue. Scraping removes bacteria as well as food debris and dead cells from the tongue. You breath will smell much better after tongue cleaning exercise.

Avoid sour foods
As far as possible try and avoid foods that cause your breath to stink up like onions and garlic. Such items have a very strong smell which may not go even after brushing, flossing and scrapping. This is because these food items make their way to your bloodstream and travel to your lungs. So every time you breathe out, your breath smells.

Use natural breath fresheners
Cloves, fennel seeds, and aniseed have antiseptic qualities that help fight bad breath. Chew on these after eating something. These not only add flavor to your mouth but also stimulate the salivary glands, which prevent dryness of mouth, thus avoiding the build-up of plaque or tartar.

If bad breath persists even after doing everything, it is time you visit your physician. It may be a signal of something more serious like infections in the mouth (caused by either a cavity in a tooth or by gum disease), respiratory tract infections (you may be having some issues of throat, sinus or lung infections), dry mouth (this may be caused by problems in salivary glands), illnesses (like diabetes, liver disease, kidney disease, lung disease, sinus disease, reflux disease etc) or even psychiatric problems.