Thursday, June 13, 2013

Tips for Fresh Breath

Why is it important to have good smelling breath? It was in my early school years that I began to understand the value of fresh breath. There was a particular set of twins everyone seemed to talk about. These two guys had the worst morning breath imaginable. What made it worse was that they both had it and were totally oblivious to it. While they seemed like intelligent and good guys their bad breath was downright repelling. I mean don't get me wrong, a person shouldn't have to walk around smelling their own breath four times a day. However, pleasant smelling breath is a vital element if you want to project admirable qualities of yourself to people around you.

Bad breath is one of the most common hygienic issues we are faced with today. In fact, for those who work in close proximity with people, having good breath is just about mandatory. Bad breath could cause a person to avoid eye contact with colleagues, miss out on intimate connections and will possibly cause one to feel bad about themselves in general. Bad breath is often defined as unpleasant odor coming from the mouth. The textbook word for bad breath is halitosis. Nobody likes bad breath or halitosis, and most people actively battle with it. One fact remains that, "at least fifty percent of the adult population has admitted to having bad breath at one time or another, and just about everyone has it in the morning". Ninety percent of foul breath is manifested by means of bacteria. Of this ninety percent, sixty percent of these bacteria are on the tongue.

Why do people get bad breath? One answer to this says that bad breath has seven major causes that allow it to manifest; dry mouth, poor oral hygiene, food, smoking, infections, medications and, disease. Dry Mouth most commonly happens when we are sleeping hence the term "morning breath". Poor oral hygiene results in a mouth full of bacterias and food particles that truly are the stuff bad breath is made of. Foods such as garlic and onion can create a particular food odor that emanates from the air we breath and even from our sweat pores! Smoking is typically an accelerator for bad breath since it dries out the mouth. When the mouth is dry, saliva cannot do as good of a job at cleaning up around the place. Infections, as well as gum disease, mouth sores and tooth decay can also cause bad breath. Lastly, there are many medications and even vitamins, that can cause dry mouth. There are even some medications that can cause lingering odor on the breath in a similar fashion to eating garlic or onion.  Always use your judgement to determine the source of the taste and/or smell of bad breath and take care of where it seems to be coming from. For example, If you find that your tongue has plaque on it you should brush on that area to remove plaque and reduce bad breath.

There are things you can do to help fight bad breath. Some of these include natural odor eliminating cures that also help to kill bacteria. Some well-known remedies that can help fight bad breath include: sage, mint, cloves, chlorophyll, baking soda, tea tree oil, fennel, parsley, lemon, apple cider vinegar, tea, cinnamon and yogurt. Sage has in it essential oils containing anti-bacterial properties that help annihilate the causes of bad breath.  Mint is one of the best tasting in my honest opinion, of all natural quick fixes for bad breath. Two great ways to use mint are by chewing on fresh leaves and/or by purchasing and preparing mint tea. Cloves contain powerful antiseptic properties making them very useful at destroying odor-causing microorganisms in the mouth. Chlorophyll is a very beneficial substance to both oral and overall health as it is both anti-inflammatory and antibacterial. In fact, in 1950 a Dr. Howard Westcott discovered that a mere one hundred milligrams of chlorophyll daily can greatly help to counteract both body odors and foul breath. Baking Soda is very efficient at helping to cure bad breath as it favorably affects the PH of the mouth making it to where bacteria cannot survive.  

Tea Tree Oil can greatly prove useful in curbing the effects of bad breath as it contains anti-fungal and anti-septic properties. Tea Tree Oil is typically purchased in a liquid tincture and should always be diluted using only a few drops of oil per cup of water for use as mouthwash only. Never swallow Tea Tree oil as it is bad to consume it internally. Fennel Seed is typically used by either chewing one and one half teaspoons of fennel seed per day and/or by steeping fennel seed tea. Fennel seed is perfectly suited to curing bad breath as it gives a naturally occurring light crisp taste/scent. Parsley can help mask the odor of bad breath but does very little to diminish the amassing of erratic sulfur compounds. Lemons barely help to even weaken bad breath. Lemons should only ever be consumed when their juice is diluted in water. The reason for this being that lemon juice can be harmful as it has an acidic nature when in its undiluted form.  

Apple Cider Vinegar is used in a different manner than most bad breath cures, however it can prove to be very effective. With apple cider vinegar you will usually take one tablespoon right before and/or after a meal. The apple cider vinegar serves somewhat as a mild stomach acid and helps break down food. This helps with bad breath by preventing it before it starts. Apple cider vinegar alone can also function as an effective mouthwash to remove bad breath odors. Tea is a great antioxidant as well as a container or vehicle if you will of polyphenols. Polyphenols help put a stop to bad breath by disrupting bacterial growth naturally. Cinnamon is unique in that directly kills many known bacteria and it can even kill e. coli. Lastly,  yogurt is great for bad breath when added to the diet. Yogurt has shown to remarkably decrease odorous compounds, specifically hydrogen sulfide by an astonishing eighty percent.

There are many cures that work great for bad breath, many can work for hours at a time. Eventually, most bad breath remedies tend to wear off. This is why it is very important to always be hydrated and to keep extra mints and xylitol gum around at times whenever you need them the most.  Bad breath is something most everyone will have to struggle with at least a few times in their life. With a little experimenting and searching, it is possible for you to find your own perfect fresh breath remedy and to make bad breath a thing of the past.



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