- Oral Health
How to stop Bad Breath ? Halitosis Causes and Remedies
Bad Breath or Halitosis
Do you avoid meeting some people because of they have Bad Breath? Have you ever been embarrassed to talk to people because of the foul smell in your mouth? I have done that. The medical term used to describe breath odor is Halitosis and the scientific term is oral malodor. Halitosis is an unpleasant condition that causes embarrassment to many. I have a client who is a top ranking Official in a Government department holding an influential position and liaises with top level persons on a daily basis. His breathe odor is so unbearable that I try to avoid meeting him unless it's really urgent. I also have so far not gathered the guts to tell him that he needs to do something to stop bad breath either because he may take offence. Their had been times when I did not want to talk to anyone as I know that my breath does not smell fresh because of the cough I have been suffering from. Imagine lawyers, sales persons, teachers or people who need to communicate with a lot of persons on a daily basis suffering from bad breathe problems!
Causes of Bad Breathe
Here are some possible causes for Bad Breathe.
1) Poor Dental Hygiene which result in Bacteria and fungal infection which creates sulfur compounds causing bad breath. Do not avoid meeting your dentist if you have swollen, bleeding or unhealthy gums, loosening, shifting or sensitive tooth, pus coming from around the teeth, Pain on chewing, mouth ulcers or tooth decay.
2) Throat/nasal infection/ Sinus Infections.
3) Eating certain foods like onion, garlic and cabbage contain high amounts of sulfur compounds causes bad breathe. Weakened digestive system and Dehydration results in bad breathe as well.
4) Dieting, fasting, or talking for long periods of time can get the saliva dried up causing bad breath.
5) Hormonal changes - pregnancy or menstruation some times causes bad breathe.
6) Some drugs including penicillamine and lithium especially when taken on a long term basis causes bad breathe.
7) Drinking alcohol or smoking
8) Diseases like cancer, tuberculosis, syphilis, dehydration, and zinc deficiency can cause bad breathe.
9) Tongue/ lip piercing can cause infections and their by bad breath.
Home Remedies for Bad Breath
75% of the world population suffers from bad breathe or related problems but most people who suffer from bad breath aren't even aware that they have a problem! Believe it or not, Bad breath can affect personal relationships, work environment and ultimately our own life!
Given below are a list of easy to follow home remedies to get rid of bad breath
- Have the juice of one fresh squeezed lemon with a little honey in the morning and before going to bed.
- Mix one spoon of ginger juice and one spoon of lemon juice in one glassful of warm water and use for gargling.
- Chewing fresh Parsley.
- Chewing fresh mint leaves.
- Chewing cloves, fennel, cardamom or anise seeds.
- Brushing teeth with one pinch of the Baking soda using a regular toothpaste before doing the normal brushing, flossing and tongue cleaning twice a day.
- Gargling mouth with the juice of half a lemon with two pinches of salt mixed in lukewarm water before going to bed.
- Using two drops of tea tree oil in the toothpaste used for Brushing. Use the oil to moisten dental floss used for flossing as well.
- Eating Apple.
- Drinking Pineapple juice.
- Gargle using peppermint leaves solution everyday.
- Chew Holy Basil Leaves (Tulsi) and then drink water.
- Use black tea to rinse the mouth. It reduces plaque formation and the production of acids that cause tooth decay.
- Mix one part water with one part hydrogen peroxide. Add a pinch of salt and a pinch of baking soda in it and use the solution to gargle your mouth after brushing, flossing and using a tongue cleaner.
- Gargle using one pinch of potassium permanganate in a glass of water.
Dental Hygiene - Tips and Techniques
Fresh smelling breathe need not remain a dream anymore. We can now smile with the new found confidence of fresh breathe by following some easy to follow steps which helps to stop bad breathe and helps maintain dental hygiene.
- Brush the teeth for a minimum 3 minutes using toothpaste containing chlorine dioxide. Two drops of tea tree oil can be added to the toothpaste if available. Make sure to use a good quality toothbrush like Oral B.
- Use dental floss to for removing rotting food debris between the teeth at least once a day.
- Use a tongue cleaner or tongue scraper to remove bacteria and fungi from the tongue.
- Use a mouth rinse containing antibacterials such as chlorhexidine, zinc gluconate or chlorine dioxide.
- Avoid foods that are known to cause bad breath like onion, garlic, hot peppers, cabbage etc. Also avoid highly spiced foods which leave an odor in the mouth up to 24 hours. Drink teas like peppermint, Moroccan mint, jasmine, hibiscus and lemon balm without adding sugar to freshen up your mouth. Some fish varieties, cheese varieties and meat also leave an odor for longer periods, so try avoiding them as far as possible
- Maintain water levels in the body by drinking several glasses of water a day so that the mouth does not become too dry. (Water does help to flush out toxins out of our body as well.) You can chew sugarless mints as well.
- Empty stomach do result in bad breathe as well. So eat at least three meals a day.
- Perform a periodical clean up process with the Dentist. Well, now let us smile with the new found confidence of fresh breath.