One of the things you surely never want to experience is being the person with bad breath. You’ve probably had your share of talking to people with this problem and you know how unpleasant and awkward that is – especially if they’re completely unaware of that, which most of the people suffering from bad breath are anyway. But the facts say that about 50 per cent of adults suffer from bad breath at some point throughout their lives. Scary, huh? It’s easy to end up in this half of the population. And sometimes grabbing a chewing gum is a good go-to solution, but it doesn’t go all the way to the root cause of the problem. Having bad breath can sometimes be a sign of a health problem, though in most cases it is not. So if you’re positive that you don’t suffer from postnasal drip, diabetes, liver or kidney disease, bronchitis, respiratory tract infection, or digestive disorders, it’s your mouth that is the problem.
Causes of bad breath
So what is it that causes problems in the mouth leading to the actual bad odor? Sorry to break it to you, but one of the causes is actually improper dental hygiene. But fret not, sometimes it’s not because of you. Bad breath is caused by bacteria build-up in the mouth. Sometimes certain foods give you bad breath (think garlic!), but this is not the chronic condition, also known as halitosis. Halitosis occurs due to yeast and candida overgrowth. These bacteria are sometimes collected by stuck food particles and dead cells in the mouth, but sometimes it just so happens that there’s too many of them. They can give off sulfur-containing compounds, which then results in bad breath. So here’s how you can fight these bad guys in a natural way.
How to cure bad breath permanently
Drink More Water
It seems almost funny that drinking more water helps with issues from weight gain to stress, but it is indeed true. In the case of bad breath – yes, dehydration is actually one of its causes. How do you fight dehydration? By increasing your water intake. The bacteria in your mouth feed on food particles that get loose, and as we mentioned before, this results in a bad odour. Do you know what fights the bacteria? It’s saliva, and the body cannot produce enough of it if you’re not drinking enough water. Saliva, as an oxygen-rich fluid, helps to fight the bacteria because they thrive in an environment that’s low in oxygen. So stick to your bottle!
Welcome Herbs in Your Daily Routine
Heavy tea drinkers already do that; but even if you’re not one, it’s good to know that polyphenols, compounds found in green and black tea, may stop the growth of the bacteria in your mouth responsible for bad breath, or prevent the existing bacteria from producing the smelly compounds. Apart from those, stinging nettle tea is said to be good as this herb may purify the blood and eliminate toxins from the body, as it stimulates the lymphatic system and increases the excretion of uric acid throughout the kidneys.
Apart from this, you can also use herbs to freshen your breath. Fresh rosemary, mint, tarragon or parsley are good for chewing. Do it for about a minute.
Take Care of Your Tongue
You probably brush your teeth at least twice a day. But do you take care of your tongue as diligently? If that’s not the case, you should definitely start. Food particles can also stick to the tongue, as well as dead cells and bacteria, and this can form a thick coating responsible for bad breath. Remove it by using a quality tongue scraper, a special instrument that doesn’t cost much, but it’s essential for your oral hygiene. Cleaning your tongue every day will ensure no unwanted guests staying there and causing trouble.
Sometimes halitosis occurs because the body lacks the mineral zinc, whose role is to help maintain a clean, bacteria-free mouth. So what you can do is taking zinc supplements and also eating zinc-rich foods, such as pumpkin, cocoa, organ meats. Some mouthwashes also contain zinc as an active ingredient, because it will neutralize sulfur compounds and thus improve breath.
Use Mouthwashes Regularly
Especially those containing zinc, as we previously mentioned. Besides those, some of the mouthwashes that will deal with your problem directly are those containing essential oils. In comparison with conventional mouthwashes, mouthwashes with essential oils, such as tea tree oil, lemon oil or peppermint oil, have been shown to reduce the level of sulfur compounds. Nevertheless, whichever mouthwash you opt for, make sure it doesn’t contain any alcohol, because it can dry out the mouth, which, as we discussed previously, contributes to bad breath.
Snack on the Good Things
Similarly to using a tongue scraper, some foods can actually do something similar. It’s crunchy foods, such as carrots, apples, celery. Eating more of those can help scrape out the plaque build-ups from teeth and tongue. But let’s not forget that those foods are also rich in fibre and other immune-boosting nutrients. It’s never a bad idea to get them, as they can help with overall health, but more importantly here, they help trigger an increased production of saliva inside the mouth, which is a great thing when it comes to fighting bad breath.
Although the majority of causes of bad breath is located in the mouth, sometimes halitosis happens due to poor gut health. If your digestive tract is full of toxin build-up, if your dietary habits are just bad, or if you suffer from some of the digestive system issues, you can easily develop bad breath. These conditions create a lot of gas in the body and guess what – the gas has to exit, so sometimes it can happen through the mouth. The solution to this can be taking probiotics, which can help replace the bad microbes causing odour with beneficial varieties. Take a probiotic supplement, or just add probiotic-rich foods to your diet. There’s plenty to choose from yoghurt, pickled vegetables, kombucha tea…
Realizing that you suffer from bad breath can be an awful discovery, because it will prompt you to think of all the social situations where you might have been too close to someone while talking. Oops! But with these natural remedies, you can solve the problem pretty quickly. But keep some mints in your pocket, just in case. Good luck!