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    You brush your teeth twice a day so why does your breath smell so bad? Sucking on a mint may help temporarily, but only seems to mask the problem. You’re tired of worrying about offending someone with your breath, so what can you do? Read >>
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Health and Fitness News

Minty Fresh

Causes of and treatment for bad breath.

Perhaps you have no idea your breath smells or maybe your mouth tastes funny or someone has told you that you have bad breath. Whether you know you have bad breath or not, it’s an embarrassing problem. You brush your teeth twice a day so why does your breath smell so bad? Sucking on a mint may help temporarily, but only seems to mask the problem. You’re tired of worrying about offending someone with your breath, so what can you do?

Read on to learn what might be causing your stinky breath and ways you can treat get rid of it once and for all.

Hygiene, Habits, and Health

Known also as halitosis, bad breath can be the result of any number of things. The most obvious cause of smelly breath is poor dental hygiene. Without proper brushing and regular flossing, bacteria can build up between the teeth and on the teeth, gums, and tongue, causing a foul odor. Dentures or dental appliances that aren’t cleaned regularly can also begin to smell.
Unhealthy habits such as smoking or chewing tobacco can lead to bad breath as

well. Continue smoking, and bad breath will only be the start of your health problems.

The foods you eat can contribute to stinky breath also. Onions, garlic, and certain spices are the biggest offenders, but coffee, alcohol, cheese, fish, tomato, and horseradish should also be avoided for fresh breath. Even if you brush your teeth after every meal, the compounds in these foods are digested and enter your bloodstream, where they reach your lungs and come out in your breath. Foods high in sugar have also been associated with bad breath, so it may be time to trade in you sweet tooth for sweet breath.

In some cases, bad breath is merely the result of having a dry mouth. Your saliva works to rinse your mouth and remove bacteria that cause odors. This is why many people wake up with bad morning breath. Some people’s dry mouth lasts longer due to a medical issue or medication that reduces production of saliva and causes dry mouth.

Bad breath can also be the result of an underlying health condition. An infection in the mouth, tooth decay, gum disease, tonsil stones, acid reflux, diabetes, sinus infections, and post-nasal drip are all possible culprits.

Help for Halitosis

Your first line of defense against bad breath is good dental hygiene. Just like your dentist recommends, brush two times a day and be sure to brush your tongue. Get a new toothbrush every several months. Once a day, floss between your teeth to remove food and plaque. Try using an antibacterial mouthwash to eliminate bad breath.

Smoke or chew tobacco? It’s time to stop. Instead, chew sugar-free gum or suck on sugar-free candy to moisten your mouth or distract you from smoking. And keep a water bottle nearby to drink water throughout the day. Water and unsweetened tea are the best beverages to treat dry mouth and take away stinky breath.

When you’re around people you don’t want to offend, avoid foods with strong odors to maintain fresh breath. In other words, be prepared to say “No” to the spicy salsa or plate of Asian food.
If you have dentures or a dental appliance, take time each day to clean them. Regardless of any extra stuff in your mouth, make an appointment twice a year to see your dentist for regular cleanings.

When these home remedies aren’t enough, talk with your doctor or dentist if you suspect your medication or an underlying health condition is to blame for your bad breath. Treat the condition or change your medication and your halitosis should improve.

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