Bad breath or Halitosis is common around the world. It is usually caused by an accumulation of bacteria in the mouth as a result of gum disease, food, or plaque.
Some causes of bad breath are certain foods ( garlic, onions, fish ), tobacco products, poor dental hygiene, health problems, dry mouth ( resulting from breathing through the mouth ), mouth infections, dental problems, or medications.
* Tips to reduce and prevent bad breath
• Use fluoride toothpaste to brush at least twice a day, especially after meals. Food particles in the mouth can rot and cause bad odors.
• Scrape the coating on the tongue as it can host foul-smelling bacteria. Gently brush your tongue with the toothbrush.
• Rinse the mouth regularly with an anti-bacterial mouth wash, which adds extra protection by reducing plaque-causing bacteria. Rinse the mouth with water after every meal.
• Avoid a dry mouth: Drink plenty of water - avoid coffee, soft drinks, or alcohol which can cause dry mouth. Chew gum or some sugarless sweet to stimulate saliva.
• Avoid smoking and chewing tobacco. It can leave behind some chemicals in the mouth or precipitate gum disease or oral cancers.
• Change the toothbrush regularly when it is frayed, preferably every 3-4 months. Choose a soft-bristled toothbrush.
• People using dentures or braces should clean them on a regular basis.
• Loose-fitting dentures cause infections in the mouth and are the reasons for bad breath.
• Diabetic patients are more likely to develop oral infections & gum disease. They need to monitor their sugar intake carefully.
• Schedule regular dental check-ups at least once a year and have the teeth or dentures examined and cleaned.
Fight bad breath naturally
• Fresh cloves steeped in warm water is a natural anti-bacterial mouthwash that destroys bacteria and freshens breath.
• Fennel seeds ( Saunf) give a strong, pleasant odor and are loaded with antioxidants that help ease gas and bloating. They also alkalize the saliva, which prevents the overgrowth of bad bacteria