How do I know if my breath smells bad?
There are several ways to know if your breath smells unpleasant or bad.
Lick your wrist, let it dry for a moment, and then smell the saliva to see if there is an unpleasant odour.
Use a tongue scraper to gently scrape your tongue or floss the back of your teeth and gums and then smell both to indicate whether you have bad breath.
You can also ask a close friend or family member, dentist, or hygienist if you have bad breath.
Though bad breath can be embarrassing, it is extremely common - up to 50% of people will experience persistently bad breath in their lifetime. There are many causes of bad breath, also referred to as halitosis, from diet and smoking to poor oral hygiene and lack of good oral health education. Prevention of bad breath is key, and in mild cases, bad breath can be treated at home with prescriptive oral care solutions and a good oral care routine. Long-term, persistent halitosis can be a sign of more serious oral health issues, and in these instances, only a dentist can get rid of bad breath permanently.
Bad Breath Treatment
Daily Oral Hygiene
One of the most effective ways of treating bad breath is by instilling a good daily oral care routine. Poor oral hygiene is one of the main causes of mild and temporary halitosis and, with the right oral care routine, it can easily be alleviated and combatted. Brushing teeth and gums twice daily for 2 minutes each time is essential and will ensure that odour-causing bacteria are eliminated daily. We recommend using a Sonic Toothbrush for optimal cleaning and oxygen delivery to all areas of the mouth, plus with a built-in 2-minute timer, you can always be sure that your teeth and gums are receiving the best clean possible.
Our Bad Breath collection includes everything you need to combat bad breath, whether you're looking for toothpaste for gum health, foaming mouthwash or a water flosser.
Flossing teeth daily is also essential for bad breath treatment. A Water Flosser is a great alternative to dental floss if flossing is something you find difficult to do. Finally, using mouthwash after meals and in between brushing and flossing will help combat the bacteria that lead to halitosis. When gums and teeth are clean and healthy, bad breath can be prevented effectively.
Active Ingredients & Targeted Solutions
Bad breath prevention at home starts with good oral hygiene and continues with the solutions you use as part of your oral care routine. As dentists, we never recommend the use of toothpaste that doesn’t include active ingredients. Active ingredients work to protect tooth and gum health and will combat and target halitosis-causing bacteria and plaque. Look for formulations that are clinically proven, clean, and include active ingredients like Chlorhexidine and Fluoride to prevent bad breath permanently. It also helps to choose oral care solutions that are tailor-made to combat bad breath. The more prescriptive your oral care solutions are, the better results you will see in your oral health. While we encourage the use of active ingredients, we also recommend that you never use oral care solutions that contain unnecessary or unsafe ingredients. Never use toothpaste, dental floss, or mouthwash formulas that contain health-damaging ingredients like sulphates, microbeads, palm oils, parabens, triclosan, DEA, or SLS when combating bad breath.
Nicotine use causes gum disease, dries out the mouth, and affects saliva production, all of which contribute to bad breath. Though halitosis can be managed by maintaining a good oral care routine, only giving up smoking will prevent oral malodour permanently.
Avoid Certain Foods & Drinks
Foods like garlic and onion, cheese, tinned fish and citrus fruits can cause bad breath as can drinks like alcohol and coffee, Due to the way the body digests these foods and the effects they have on saliva production, short-term, mild halitosis, and bad breath can occur. Alcohol and coffee dehydrate the mouth which can cause temporary bad breath. Make sure you stay hydrated when eating or drinking these foods and drinks and use a clinically proven, targeted mouthwash after meals to help prevent bad breath after consumption.
Seek Professional Advice and Treatment
If you are maintaining good oral care daily and follow the steps above but still experience persistent bad breath, you should seek advice and treatment from your dentist. In some cases, long-term or severe halitosis can be a sign of gum disease or tooth decay, both of which require professional treatment. Only through professional treatment for these oral care issues can you prevent bad breath, halitosis, or oral malodor permanently,