We all know the standard oral care steps of brushing twice a day and flossing daily. Still, even with the constant care, you might catch a whiff of your own bad breath that knocks you back mid-day. To help you from having to smell your own bad breath—or worse, someone else smelling it—we’ve compiled a list of tips and trick to keeping your breath fresh.
Keep it Moist
When your mouth is dry, it becomes a breeding ground for the bacteria that cause bad breath. You need water and saliva to keep those bacteria in check and wash them away. Dry mouth can be avoided by simply staying hydrated, so drink those eight glasses a day.
On the flip side, avoid things that dehydrate you. This includes alcohol, coffee, tea, and anything else that otherwise depletes your natural body fluids. These lessen your saliva production, meaning there’s nothing to wash the bacteria away. Instead, the stink-causing bacteria cling to your tooth enamel—also risking tooth decay. Vaping and tobacco have also shown to cause dry mouth, leading to that same stinky effect.
Drinking water constantly, while also drinking alcohol for example, can help lessen this. So long story short, drink water.
Make Sure Mouth Wash is In Your Routine
Mouth wash is a great way to get fresh breath. There are many different kinds, and t’s important to choose the right mouth wash for you. To make the right choice, talk to your dentist about what might benefit you the most.
You should also consider the product’s makeup. Alcohol-based mouth washes, the ones that commonly contain ethanol and give you that burning sensation, kill ALL bacteria. Even the good ones. This type also leaves your mouth dry. As mentioned before, dry mouth leads to bad bacteria. So these mouth washes might actually be leading your breath to stink much later in the day.
Instead, look for alcohol-free mouth washes which will focus on killing more bad than good bacteria.
Brush Your Tongue
It might sound weird, but you should make sure you’re also scrubbing that tongue twice a day. This will help dislodge any bacteria there that are causing bad breath. The bacteria on your tongue can build up over time. This build up can lead to a range of issues like gum disease and can generally be bad for your overall health. Even mouth wash alone can’t remove the build up.
So if you’re brushing your teeth, but not your tongue, you’re missing a whole lot of bacteria right there in your mouth. Which obviously defeats the idea of a bacteria free mouth for fresh breath. Try brushing your tongue each time you brush your teeth. It’ll feel a little weird, maybe even tickle, but you’ll get used to it pretty quickly.
Chew on Something Fresh
The most commonly used breath freshening tool is minty chewing gum. Chewing gum has shown to stimulate salivaproduction, helping get rid of those bacteria. Chewing it after eating has also shown to help prevent oral health issues. However, this will only work if the gum is sugar free. Sugar-sweetened gums actually promote cavities and oral health issues.
When checking the gum’s sweetener, it’s probably best to avoid the notorious aspartame. Instead, look for the naturally occurring sweetener, xylitol. Xylitol has even shown to prevent some oral health issues. Sounds pretty sweet to us!
If you want something even more natural for fresh breath, try mint. That’s right, straight mint leaves can help deordorize your mouth. This is because mint leaves contain chlorophyll, which is believed to be able to kill bacteria. So keep a few mint plants in your garden for easy access.