Happy National Fresh Breath Day! Here at ClearWhite Dental in Clearwater, Florida, we want our breath to be as fresh as a breeze blowing in from one of our sandy white beaches. If that’s the kind of fresh breath you want, there are things you can do to get it.
We like these tips we found at the KISBYTO blog.
7 Tips for Fresh Breath
- Clean your tongue. Along with brushing and flossing twice a day, also use a tongue scraper, available at most drugstores, or brush your tongue for fresh breath.
- Chew sugarless gum. Surprising as it sounds, saliva is the best defense against bad breath. A common cause of halitosis is dry mouth, which can be triggered by certain medications and health problems. If you’re wondering why morning breath can be smelly, that’s because saliva flow is lower during sleep. Chewing gum counteracts these problems by stimulating salivation.
- Scent your breath with cinnamon. Unlike other flavorings, such as mint, which only mask bad breath, cinnamon appears to have odor-combating compounds. The cinnamon-flavored gum, Big Red, seems to reduce odor-causing bacteria.
- Keep your mouth moist. Drinking more water also helps wash away bad-smelling bacteria. There’s also research indicating that drinking tea may be helpful, since it contains polypehnols, a plant chemical that may help curb bacterial growth.
- Pay attention to your diet. An unfortunate side effect of a low-carb diet, such as the Atkins plan, can be “dragon breath” due to ketosis (the fat-burning state that is one of the goals of this type of diet). The only cure is increasing crabs, though chewing mint leaves or parsley can temporarily mask the problem. Also watch out for other foods that can trigger mouth odor, such as coffee, alcohol, and such obvious culprits as onions and garlic.
- Choose the right mouthwash. Antibacterial mouthwashes help combat oral infections, thus improving breath.
- Rule out medical problems. Common dental causes include cavities, gum disease (which may not cause any obvious symptoms other than bad breath), and faulty tooth restorations that have become a breeding ground for bacteria. However, if you have good oral health—and persistent halitosis—check with your doctor, since such illnesses as respiratory tract infections, diabetes, acid reflux disease, liver disease and even cancer, in rare cases, can also cause mouth.
So you can have fresh breath by taking these steps. And it is especially important to see Dr. Jergins at ClearWhite Dental to rule out tooth decay or gum disease. Because while you may think you don’t have bad breath, the only way to really know is to ask someone who will tell you the truth, or visit your dentist. 🙂