Why Your Breath Smells and What You Can Do About It!
Would you agree with me when I say that bad breath is enough to put you off on a first date? We have all had bad breath, although some of us have it more often than others…. Bad breath, also known (by its medical name) as halitosis, can be the result of bad hygiene. However, to have good oral hygiene, it’s not always enough to just brush your teeth and floss daily. Today I will review 10 tips to help you keep a fresh breath naturally – and to help you stay a confident kisser,-)
What Causes Bad Breath?
There are 5 main causes of bad breath:
Poor dental hygiene: No surprises here. Brushing is essential in order to keep a clean oral cavity. It prevents bacteria from building up in the mouth and forming plaque, which may be responsible for bad breath and tooth decay.
Diet: I am sure you have already noticed that certain food like garlic and foods from the sulfur family cause bad breath. This is because sulfur compounds are released into the bloodstream and then out of the body through the lungs.
Acidic food and drinks can encourage bad breath by creating an acidic environment in the mouth. Examples of acidic foods and drinks are meat, dairy, processed food, sugary food, coffee, alcohol, sodas.
A high-protein and low-carbs diet can lead to bad breath. When your body burns fat instead of sugar to produce energy (as it does when on the Atkins diet), ketones are generated. This condition, called ketosis, is notorious for causing bad breath.
Tobacco: People who smoke are likely to suffer from smoker’s breath. This is because the chemicals in tobacco smoke can remain in the mouth, and also because tobacco dries out the palate (see the next point).
Dry mouth: Saliva cleans the mouth cavity of the oral bacteria that create odors.
Diseases: It’s also possible that your bad breath is caused by a medical condition. Mouth odor is often associated with gum disease or tooth decay, but it can also signal respiratory or sinus infections as the nasal discharge drips from the sinuses into the back of the throat. Cancer, diabetes, and kidney failure can all cause bad breath because of the chemicals they produce in the body.
Fortunately there are ways to minimize bad breath. Here are 10 tips for maintaining a sweet-smelling breath:
1- Brush, Floss and Scrape: Fresh breath starts with good dental hygiene, which means brushing twice a day and flossing at least once a day, plus getting regular dental cleanings. Bring your floss to work or make flossing part of your morning routine: drink juice, brush skin, floss. Flossing helps remove the food trapped between your teeth and in the gum line. When you floss, you will find that you will remove some smelly trapped particles. Use an organic toothpaste, as commercially sold care-products are full of harmful chemicals.
Many people forget to brush their tongues, but as bacteria can settle there too, it’s a good idea to use a tongue scraper when brushing.
2- Keeping your mouth clean is vital. There are millions of bacteria in our mouth whose byproducts (caused by bacterial digestion) all contribute to less-than-fresh breath. Make sure to drink plenty of water throughout the day to flush bacteria away and keep the oral cavity nice and clear.
3- Oil pulling: This comes from the Ayurvedic tradition. Simply swish your mouth with a tablespoon of organic cold-pressed oil for 10 to 15 minutes. This will help reduce the bacteria and keep your gum healthy.
4- Cinnamon: Suck on a cinnamon stick: cinnamon has antibacterial properties.
5- Fresh herbs: Chew on some mint, parsley, basil, sage, rosemary, thyme, cilantro, fennel or dill to mask bad-breath odors. They will release very pleasant essential oils.
6- Diet: Food rich in Vitamin C will help you keep a nice and sweet breath. Melons, berries and citrus fruits such as oranges are packed with vitamin C. Crunchy vegetables such as celery, carrots and apples are all good options to chew after a meal, because they help remove any food that has become stuck in your teeth.
7- Detox: Bad breath may be a sign that your intestines are full of toxins, and so your liver and kidneys are being overwhelmed. A detox could help. Look for the help of an experienced practitioner to guide you through the detox process.
8- Probiotics: Most of the time, the digestive system causes bad breath. Probiotics will supply your gut with healthy bacteria that will help to improve digestion. Taking digestive enzymes with each meal may also help.
9- Visit a dentist: If your bad breath persists, it’s essential to visit a dentist in order to identify any problems or infected areas. Make sure to search for a holistic dentist in your area.
10- Hazelnuts: Hazelnuts also help fight bad breath. Chew a handful of them after dinner.
What about chewing gums and mouthwash?
Chewing gum masks bad-breath odors for a while, but it doesn’t address the cause of the problem. Remember that chewing gum also often contains sugars, which feeds bacteria in the mouth. This encourages them to grow faster, which in turn means they release more of the byproducts responsible for a smelly breath.
I wouldn’t advise using mouthwash either, as this can disturb the PH of the mouth. A low pH level allows bacteria to flourish. If you are brave enough, suck on a lemon wedge after eating garlic or sulfur compound food. This will help to get rid of the odor.
What is your favorite tip for helping to keep your breath fresh?
Love and fresh kisses