Let’s face it, bad breath is embarrassing. The good news is that for the most part, bad breath (also known as halitosis) can be avoided. Here are some great remedies from our Smile Architect, Dr. Todd B. Barsky.
Gargle on minty mouthwash
If you need 20 minutes of freedom from bad breath, gargling with a minty mouthwash is a great idea. But like Cinderella’s coach-turned-pumpkin, when your time is up, the magic will be gone, and you’ll be back to talking from afar again. Dr Barsky recommends Dental Herb Company’s TOOTH & GUMS TONIC.
Carry a toothbrush
Some odors can be eliminated — permanently or temporarily — if you brush immediately after a meal. The main culprit in bad breath is a soft, sticky film of living and dead bacteria that clings to your teeth and gums. At any given time, there are 50 trillion of these microscopic organisms loitering in your mouth. They sit in every dark corner, eating each morsel of food that passes your lips, collecting little smells, and producing little odors of their own. As you exhale, the bacteria exhale. So brush away the plaque after each meal and get rid of bad breath.
Brush your tongue
Most people overlook their tongues. Your tongue is covered with bacteria. Under this bacteria there’s room to harbor plaque and some of the things we eat. That causes bad breath. While brushing, gently sweep the top of your tongue, too, so that you don’t leave food and bacteria behind to breed bad breath.
Parsley adds more than green to your dinner plate; it’s also a breath-saver, because it contains chlorophyll, a known breath deodorizer. So pick up that sprig of garnish and chew it thoroughly. Or toss a few handfuls (even add some watercress to the mix) in a juicer. Sip the juice anytime you need to refresh your breath.
Watch your intake of odorous foods
Highly spiced foods like to linger long after the party’s over. Certain tastes and odors recirculate through the essential oils that they leave in your mouth. Depending on how much you eat, the odor can remain up to 24 hours, no matter how often you brush your teeth. Some foods to avoid include onions, hot peppers, and garlic.
Ban certain beverages
Coffee, beer, wine, and whiskey are at the top of the list of liquid offenders. Each leaves a residue that can attach to the plaque in your mouth and infiltrate your digestive system. Each breath you take spews traces back into the air.
Rinse out your mouth
Even when you can’t brush, you can rinse. Take a sip of water after meals, swish it around, and wash the smell of food from your mouth.
Chew a mint or some gum
Like mouthwash, a breath mint or minty gum is just a cover-up, good for a short interview, a short ride in a compact car, or a very short date.