One of the most common health problems in society is to fight bad breath. Foul smelling breath might be the effect of variety of reasons. The growth of anaerobic bacteria on the tongue is the most frequent reason for this. The protein present in the food we consume is broken down by these bacteria resulting in the formation of malodorous gases like skatol, hydrogen sulphide etc.
7 Tips to Fight Bad Breath
Just about everyone has to fight bad breath when they wake up in the morning. This can be reduced by a significant amount by maintaining good oral hygiene. Some individuals may suffer from bad breath even after they ensure good oral hygiene due to other problems in their mouth or body. Certain diseases also cause bad breath. The precise cause of the bad breath needs to be identified and treated accordingly. Some remedies for bad breath are given below.
- Good Oral Hygiene
To fight bad breath the most important thing is that the mouth should be frequently washed to discourage the growth of oral bacteria. Gargling with warm water is vital after every meal. Mouth should be washed even after consuming snacks like sweets or biscuits. Brushing twice a day is necessary. Its is a common adage that brushing in the mornings is for beauty whereas brushing before bedtime is for health.
- Cleaning the Tongue
Bad breath can also be caused by white or yellow coating on the tongue. This is more prominent I the mornings and has to be removed twice a day with the help of tongue cleaners. Care needs to be taken while using tongue cleaners to prevent the damage to the taste buds.
A tooth pick is basically a small sliver of plastic or wood with a sharp tip. It is used to get rid of particles of food stuck in between the teeth. Its especially useful after consuming meat or fish. It has to be used carefully to avoid damage to the gums.
Its really useful to gargle the mouth with warm water after every meal. To enhance the effect, salt is added to the water. Various types of mouthwashes are available in the market as well. Using mouthwash to gargle can also reduce the incidence of bad breath.
- Food Habits
Food rich in proteins is also known to cause bad breath. If food items like meat, fish, milk or eggs are consumed, its vital to clean the mouth properly. Certain food items, like raw onions, have a specific smell which others may find unpleasant. It has been said that an apple a day may keep the doctor away, but a piece of onion a day keeps everyone away. Snack items taken, like nuts, taken between meals may also cause bad breath. Sticking to regular times for meals is vital to avoid bad breath.
- Drinking Water
A dry mouth forms an ideal environment for the growth of oral bacteria. Saliva is essential to keep the mouth wet and reduce the growth of bacteria. Saliva secretion depends to a large extent on the amount of water consumed and so enough water needs to be drunk to sustain saliva production.
- Mouth Fresheners
The bad breath can be reduced by using natural or artificial mouth fresheners. Mostly, spicy items are used. Chewing of spices like cumin seed, clove, cinnamon, ginger, garlic etc is also helpful. Citrus fruits also help fight bad breath. Chewing gums and mouth fresheners are available commercially but care needs to be taken in while using them to prevent damage to gums and teeth.
7.Proper Brushing Technique
To fight bad breadth, good brushing technique is necessary. Brushing vigorously may result in damaged gums. Brushing after every meal and snack could lead to loss of enamel. The bristles of the brush need to be hard but smooth to get rid of particles from between the teeth. The most important aspect of brushing is the direction of brushing. The lower teeth need to brushed
upwards and it’s the other way around for the upper teeth. This is valid for both the inner and outer surfaces. For the crowns of the teeth, a forward and backward motion is recommended. This has to be done for both the upper and lower set of teeth.
If none of the above methods work, what can be done?
Try the following –
A. Removal of cause
Bad breath can result from diseases like fevers, diabetes, liver diseases, gastric disorders etc. Removing the primary cause will eliminate the bad breath automatically.
B. Modern Medicine
Bad breath may be caused by an infection and antibiotics, anti-viral and anti-fungal medicine can help cure it. In case it is due to chronic inflammatory conditions or an autoimmune response steroids could be used. Tablets encouraging saliva secretion can also help
C. Dental Cleaning
A visit to the dentist can reduce the amount of plaque and tartar in the mouth. This greatly reduces the intensity of the bad breath.
D. Filling Caries
As caries is one of the major causes of bad breath, it needs to be filled up by a dentist. Initially, silver amalgam was used but now synthetic materials have replaced it that will for sure helps fight bad breath. In case the cavity pulp is affected, root canal treatment is needed.
E. Tooth Extraction
In case the caries is deep with major damage to the teeth, extraction of the tooth is the best choice.
F. Tonsillectomy Patients suffering from chronic tonsillitis can have malodorous breath as a result of the discharges from the crypts of the tonsils. Such people notice a drastic change after tonsillectomy.
G. Psychological Counseling
People suffering from fight bad breath can become depressed and avoid others. This self inflicted isolation greatly disturbs their normal life. These people need to realize that everybody who suffers has to fight bad breath, only their intensity varies. Most people control it by good hygiene. Every has his/her own unique smell which others could find offensive. The need to ensure all personal hygiene is taken care of to reduce the intensity. Psychological support from family and friends is vital.
Certain people visit doctors to fight bad breath even without a problem. This is considered as somatisation disorder. These people usually suffer from breathlessness, pain, bad breath, abdominal discomfort etc. The presence of any real causes needs to be ruled out with proper diagnosis and psychological support provided for the patient.
Depending on the mental, physical, social and emotional condition of the person, medicine is selected in homeopathy. Depending on the persons constitution, the medicine’s strength and dosage is decided. Depending on the coating on the tongue, smell type, cause of bad breath, etc. a medicine is selected. In homeopathy, over 140 medicines are available to fight bad breath.
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