They’re in your mouth! Thousands upon thousands, waiting to generate one of the things we dislike most about our mouths—bad breath.
It ruins dates, kills confidence, and affects how you approach talking to people. But what lives in your mouth that causes bad breath, why does it happen, and how can you avoid it?
Here’s a birdseye view of bad breath, from its causes to some solutions that can help eliminate it!
The cause of bad breath is bacteria eating and processing the food you chew in your mouth. Essentially, whatever is left behind on or between your teeth is processed by bacteria that live in your mouth. The byproduct of what these microorganisms eat has to go somewhere, and that destination is the rest of your mouth. This is a very simple definition and explanation of what bad breath is.
How to avoid bad breath
The short answer is that we will always experience bad breath to some degree. The simple fact is that the byproduct of what the bacteria in our mouths create is a part of the many cycles that take place in nature. However, you can do a few key things to ensure that that byproduct doesn’t sabotage your social life.
Ensuring your oral health is where it needs to be is the first step to minimizing bad breath. The best way to do this is by making an appointment with your dentist. This is especially true if you have not had a cleaning or checkup in several years.
While the primary cause of bad breath is the interaction between food and bacteria, gum disease and cavities can also contribute. The only way you can identify these things is through a certified dentist. Why? Because gum disease advances, even though its relitively painless, however, this changes once the condition reaches the deepest parts of the mouth.
Brush and Floss
We know dentists tell you to brush and floss—shocker, right? Well, we wish there was a simpler, easier, and more effective way to irradicate bad breath, but there isn’t.
Not only does brushing and flossing get rid of bad breath, but it also eliminates the chances of you developing any of the oral health problems we talked about that can cause bad breath. Brushing and flossing also removes plaque and stops it from growing.
We recommend that you brush your teeth twice a day, at minimum when you wake up and before you go to sleep. Ideally, you brush and floss after every meal. However, we know that very few people will go that far. Should you decide to do that, we have a tough time imagining you ever having to worry about bad breath on a regular basis.
Clean your tongue
Large amounts of food get caught in between your taste buds, causing a dirty gray look on your tongue. A tongue scrubber can remove any food particles and allow toothpaste/mouthwash to better clean these areas.
Mouthwash is, believe it or not, a short-term fix to bad breath without brushing or flossing. We emphasize “short-term” because if you aren’t using the right mouthwash and you aren’t brushing or flossing, your bad breath will return sooner than you’d like.
The main thing about mouthwash that you need to know is that all brands are not created equal. You need to find an antiseptic mouthwash. If it isn’t, the product won’t work correctly because it is not attacking the problem, just covering it up with a temporary minty smell.
Straighten your teeth
There are several ways to achieve a straighter smile. Crooked teeth trap more food, which generates more bad breath. Orthodontic treatments can do a lot to ensure that bad breath stays out of your mouth for more extended periods.
Traditional braces have, and always will be, a treatment that works for straightening teeth. They can feel cumbersome at first, don’t look ideal, especially on adults, and can break. However, orthodontists have been using them to treat a wide range of cases for decades for a reason and continue to do so.
One of the newer orthodontic treatments for straightening a smile is Invisalign® clear aligners. These are clear trays that are custom-made to fit your teeth. Every treatment has a set amount of trays, each designed to make your smile a little bit straighter.
Give us a call!
Bad breath is something that we all deal with. Having said that, bad breath can also indicate bad things to come in your oral health. Click here and get in contact with us. We’ll schedule a checkup with you and give you all the information you need to get rid of bad breath for good!