Are you worried that you may have bad breath? Many people with bad breath are not aware of it, until a well-meaning friend or family member points it out. Occasional bad breath can be caused by eating certain foods or forgetting to brush your teeth. But chronic bad breath (halitosis) can be indicative of a dental or health issue.
Bad breath can ruin many important social situations from a date to a job interview. But the good news is that bad breath is almost always treatable. Here are 4 tips for preventing bad breath.
1. Practice good oral hygiene.
This may seem like a no-brainer. You assume that if you brush your teeth you can avoid bad breath. But good oral hygiene habits go beyond just brushing. It is important to brush at least twice a day to remove food particles and plaque that feed the bacteria in your mouth, which is usually the source of bad breath. You should also floss once a day to remove food and plaque from the spaces between your teeth as well where bacteria like to hide. Mouthwash will freshen your breath by killing excess bacteria in your mouth, especially those that live in hard to reach places.
2. Use a tongue scraper.
The tongue is a huge bacteria magnet, as the grooves and bumps make perfect places for them to hide and feed on the food particles that end up there. The tongue is a major indicator of the state of your breath. If you want to test your breath, try licking your (clean) wrist. Let it dry, and then smell it. If the smell is unpleasant, you probably have bad breath.
What can you do about it? Get a tongue scraper. This device (usually made of stainless steel or plastic) consists of a flat edge with a handle that is used to scrape the bacteria off your tongue. You place it flat against the back of your tongue and pull forward in one continuous motion. The advantage of the tongue scraper is that it removes bacteria from the entire surface of your tongue without redistributing it. After use you can rinse it off or clean it more thoroughly with soap and water.
3. Try dental hygiene products that are designed to treat bad breath.
There are a variety of products available that are scientifically formulated to treat the source of bad breath, the bacteria that live in your mouth. As with your digestive system, a healthy balance of bacteria is helpful, but when bacteria levels get out of balance it can cause bad breath. These toothpastes and mouthwashes for bad breath are designed to achieve the ideal balance to keep breath fresh.
4. Visit your dentist on a regular schedule.
Bad breath can also indicate dental or health issues, so it can be helpful to get to the source of it. Your dentist can evaluate your oral health and determine if you have tooth decay or gum disease that may be the cause of your bad breath. Regular dental cleanings are recommended every 6 months to keep your teeth healthy. Keeping up with these appointments can help you keep bad breath at bay.
Total Dental Care Can Help You Prevent Bad Breath
If you have concerns about your breath, Total Dental Care in Germantown, MD can help. We will evaluate your oral health and determine the cause of your bad breath in order to correct it at the source. Visit us on a regular schedule and we will help prevent bad breath from coming back.