Combating Bad Breath Naturally
Veterinarian Reviewed on January 13, 2012 by Paulina Nelega, RH
Posted in Uncategorized
Combating Bad Breath Naturally
Halitosis or bad breath is a condition when a person has foul smelling breath which is commonly related to poor dental hygiene. Bad breath may also be due to many other medical conditions and may be aggravated by eating certain types of foods, beverages and by having an unhealthy lifestyle.
Digestion begins in the mouth and different types of foods have distinct flavors and aroma. As these foods are initially digested in the mouth through salivary action and grinding with the use of the teeth, food particles can remain in the mouth. These particles may stay and rot in the mouth due to bacterial action causing bad breath. There are many more causes of bad breath but regardless of the reason, halitosis is treatable and preventable.
Causes of Bad Breath
Aside from food particles that are stuck in between teeth here are other causes of bad breath:
- Foods that you eat – foods that give strong odors like garlic, onions and chilies can cause bad breath. Some foods that cause gas on the other hand, can also cause a distinct breath smell.
- Dentures – dentures must be properly cleaned after every meal to prevent food particle accumulation and bad breath. This also goes with retainers, braces and other apparatuses used to correct teeth.
- Smoking – tobacco products causes bad breath, it can also stain teeth and cover the tongue and cheeks to reduce your ability to taste and enjoy foods.
- Medical conditions – dry mouth, gum disease, respiratory tract infections, post nasal drip, acid reflux disease, liver and kidney problems and many other health conditions also contribute in developing halitosis.
Natural Treatments for Bad Breath
- Practice good oral hygiene. Learn how to brush and floss the ideal way.
- After being sick, change your toothbrush or brush used to clean dentures.
- Visit your doctor for any signs of gum disease like pain, swelling of the gums, moving teeth, bleeding gums during or after brushing and fever.
- Stop smoking and drinking alcohol. Reduce your caffeine intake that can also stain teeth and contribute to developing bad breath.
- Drink a lot of water to moisten your oral cavity. Chew gum or candy that can also stimulate saliva to wash away harmful bacteria.
- A natural gargle to reduce bad breath is made from baking soda dissolved in warm water. With your toothbrush or a tongue cleaner, brush the tongue and cheek to totally get rid of bad breath causing bacteria.
- Mint leaves can be chewed to reduce bad breath. You may also use mint candies and lozenges.
- Yoghurt contains live cultures of beneficial bacteria that can control harmful bacteria population that causes bad breath in the mouth.
- In a glass of water, squeeze half a lemon and rinse your mouth after every meal to reduce halitosis.
- Parsley is a great vegetable to eat after a meal to remove bad breath and to freshen mouth after eating odor causing foods like onions and garlic.
Paulina Nelega, RH, has been in private practice as a Clinical Herbalist for over 15 years. She has developed and taught courses in herbal medicine, and her articles on health have appeared in numerous publications. She is very passionate about the healing power of nature. Ask Dr. Jan