Bad breath happens to everyone at some point, but it doesn’t have to ruin your holidays. While bad breath can have many different causes, it’s possible to avoid most of them with proper oral care and maintenance. Before you attend any gatherings, review these tips from Nataly Vilderman, DDS, so you can celebrate the holidays and not worry about bad breath.
You should brush your teeth at least twice each day for a minimum of two minutes each session to remove food debris and plaque. Plaque, which is a combination of mucus, food debris, and other particles, creates a sticky, textured coating on your tongue and teeth. If plaque is left too long on your teeth, it can harden, and then it will need to be cleaned by your dental hygienist.
Food gets stuck between your teeth and can’t be removed by brushing alone. Flossing helps remove this food, which can keep gum disease and cavities at bay. Without flossing properly, food will remain between your teeth. The bacteria found naturally in your mouth will feed on this food and release gases, which can cause an unpleasant odor.
Maintaining a healthy mouth requires more than brushing and flossing. You also have to care for your tongue. Regardless of how many times a day you brush your teeth, you need to brush your tongue to further prevent the growth of bacteria.
You can use the bristles of your brush or buy a toothbrush that has a tongue scraper. Your tongue traps food particles and bacteria under a thin layer of mucus, which can allow bacteria to thrive if not cleaned. Apply a small amount of toothpaste to your toothbrush or tongue scraper, and gently brush the top of your tongue to remove the bacteria and food debris.
Bad breath that is not chronic can be corrected by using a mouthwash after you brush and floss. Mouthwashes, which are formulated to kill germs, can help prevent bad breath.
If you have chronic bad breath, use a mouth rinse along with 2-3 drops of peppermint oil after your oral care routine. Mouth rinses are formulated to both kill germs and control bad breath.
Using tobacco products, such as chewing tobacco and cigarettes, can harm your overall health and cause bad breath. Tobacco products cause your mouth to become dry, which is a primary cause of bad breath. Tobacco can also cause oral cancer, irritate your gums, and stain your teeth.
Dry mouth is a common cause of bad breath. Drinking 6-8 glasses of water daily can keep your mouth moist and wash away food debris, thus preventing bad breath. Furthermore, water rids your body of a variety of harmful toxins, which can help your oral and overall health.
Celery, carrots, and apples are crisp, healthy snacks that can help maintain your production of saliva. These vegetables and fruits can also help remove bacteria on your teeth, gums, and tongue.
The caring health specialists at Nataly Vilderman DDS know how embarrassing bad breath can be, and they’re ready to help. Book an appointment online or over the phone to learn more about getting rid of bad breath.