How do you cure bad breath?
- Getting rid of these bacteria, and
- Neutralizing the odors that they produce.
Cure Bad Breath by Getting Rid of Bacteria
Start with cleaning your mouth as thoroughly as you can. Brushing your teeth is a great start. Many bacteria live in the crevices between your teeth. Floss too, as that will get between the teeth the most effectively.
The tongue is another hiding place for these bacteria. There are a couple of different ways to clean the tongue. You can use an ordinary toothbrush, or you can use a special tongue scraper. These tongue scrapers are available from some of the companies who advertise on this page.
Cleaning your mouth is an especially effective way to cure bad breath because you are not only getting rid of many bacteria as you do this, you are eliminating their food supply. These bacteria feed on food particles that are left after you eat. If you will eat only your basic three meals per day plus maybe a couple of snacks, and then you brush every time right after eating, the bacteria will have very little to feed on, and you will be taking a giant step toward curing your bad breath.
One thing to keep in mind is that these bacteria produce their strongest odors when they feed on foods rich in protein. So keeping your protein intake to a reasonable level will help in the cure.
A professional cleaning by your dental office may be needed to help get your mouth as clean as possible. Tartar buildup can make it impossible for you to get your mouth completely clean at home. Have this tartar professionally removed and you will facilitate your daily home cleaning efforts.
The odor-causing bacteria are anaerobic, which means that they prefer an environment in which they are protected from oxygen. Your thorough cleaning job, by removing food debris and what we call “materia alba,” the partially digested food gunk that remains in your mouth after you eat, will allow oxygen penetration into the areas where these bacteria like to live, and thus will greatly inhibit their growth.
Using antibacterial products will also help cure bad breath. These products are produced by companies like BreathRx, Therabreath and Breath Remedy. Their rinses and toothpastes contain antibacterials such as chlorine dioxide, thymol, and eucalyptus, all of which help you kill bacteria. These rinses are much more effective than common mouthwashes like Listerine® and Scope®. Bad breath toothpaste contains some of the same ingredients.
Cure Bad Breath by Getting Rid of the Odors the Bacteria Produce
Using odor-neutralizing products goes even further toward curing bad breath. Chlorine dioxide, besides killing bacteria, does help neutralize the smelly sulfur compounds that make up halitosis. Zinc, which is present in some formulas, also converts volatile sulfur compounds into non-volatile, non-odorous forms.
These companies that were mentioned produce mouth rinses, gum, and toothpastes that contain these odor-neutralizing compounds, and they are all helpful. There are also bad breath mints that neutralize these odors. With mints, especially, be sure you get the prescription quality mints with no sugar from these breath treatment companies, or you will be promoting the growth of the bacteria rather than neutralizing their odors.
This information is provided for you by the mynewsmile.com cosmetic dentist referral service, and was personally written by Dr. David Hall.