Bad breath is something we all deal with, but that doesn’t make it any less embarrassing when it happens! Sometimes bad breath creeps up on you, appearing after that morning cup of coffee even though you brushed your teeth, or starting in the afternoon after you splurge on that ice cream cone. Bad breath doesn’t care that you have important things to do, a hot date, or an intimate dinner to attend.
When one of those awkward moments occurs and you get caught with a mouth smelling like mothballs, you may be tempted to pop a piece of gum in your mouth. Gum, mints, and other sugary candies can mask the smell of bad breath for a period of time, but these treats won’t address the actual problem and wear off quickly. On top of their less-than-effective nature, gum and mints contain sugars, dyes, and artificial flavorings that can have a negative impact on your dental health over time.
Bacteria love the sugars left behind between your teeth after chewing a piece of gum or enjoying a mint. Feeding on and collecting around these sugars, harmful and odor-causing bacteria can actually increase after chewing gum, making your breath potentially smell even worse than it did before. Instead of continuing the stinky breath cycle and inviting more bacteria to join the party with sugary bad breath remedies, try some of these alternative bad breath cures:
The first step to ridding yourself of bad breath is to practice excellent dental hygiene. Doing some kind of dental cleaning at least twice a day can help you stay fresher for longer, and brushing after meals can help prevent bad breath after eating. To get your mouth as clean as possible and to set yourself up with a sturdy foundation for good breath, use these important dental tools:
- Toothbrush: We know, we know. You obviously already know you’re supposed to brush your teeth! While everyone knows that tooth brushing is important, few people put much thought into which toothbrushes they use. Your toothbrush helps to remove plaque, prevent cavities, improve tooth whiteness, and freshen breath, but even with such an important job to do, the humble toothbrush is often overlooked.
Most toothbrushes are made from petroleum-derived plastic which is non-recyclable, non-biodegradable and takes hundreds of years to decompose. Millions of toothbrushes are disposed of annually causing a serious negative environmental impact. Next time you choose that all-important tool, choose a plastic alternative and get a Wowe Bamboo Toothbrush. These eco-friendly alternatives to traditional plastic toothbrushes are biodegradable, so they are as good for the Earth as they are for keeping your breath smelling fresh!
- Floss: Flossing is another important step in any dental routine, but did you know flossing can also help prevent bad breath? By removing the plaque and buildup from between your teeth, you prevent stinky bacteria from growing and accumulating around your gums!
Regular nylon dental floss does a decent job of removing plaque, sugars, and buildup, but did you know that nylon cannot be recycled and nylon dental floss is often eaten by sea creatures and birds? The Natural Biodegradable Silk Dental Floss from Wowe Lifestyle is an eco-friendly alternative to nylon varieties and is entirely biodegradable.
- Tongue Cleaner: The tongue can hold a lot of odor-causing bacteria, fungus, and dead cells, and while a toothbrush can remove some, a tongue scraper is the best way to reach every nook and cranny. To freshen your breath, get the Wowe Metal Tongue Scraper in stainless steel or pure copper. These metals are sturdy enough to withstand a lifetime of use and make an excellent addition to your bathroom full of eco-friendly products.
Bad Breath Cures
While proper dental and oral hygiene is the first step to fresh breath, there are some other additional methods and cures you can use to keep yourself smelling sweet as a rose. Since sugars can attract bad breath causing bacteria, we recommend natural sugar-free methods that are good and good for you.
Swish cool water around your mouth to wash away bacteria and bad odors. This trick is especially helpful for combatting morning breath. Drinking plenty of water is also key to keeping your breath smelling fresh since dehydration can make nasty odors even worse. Carry a reusable water bottle like the stainless steel water bottle we sell at Wowe! Keeping fresh water on hand is great for your overall health as well as your breath.
Eating crunchy nuts and raw fruits/vegetables can help clean the teeth and improve the smell of breath. Carrots, apples, celery, cranberries, walnuts, almonds and similar foods can help combat bad breath and make an excellent healthy snack. Though carrots and apples are great for freshening breath, avoid fleshy citrus fruits. Citrus and acids can worsen bad breath, and cause tooth decay and disease.
Fresh herbs have pungent, highly fragrant scents, making them excellent at fighting bad breath. Chew raw herbs like parsley, peppermint, cilantro, sage, basil, and others for a boost of freshness. You can also steep herbs to create a mouth rinse or tea that will have similar effects. Herbal teas contain no caffeine and are another excellent way to freshen your breath with herbs.
Yogurt is a probiotic, meaning it is full of healthy bacteria that help the body. Eating a serving of yogurt a day can help reduce the number of bad bacteria in your body and diminish odor-causing chemicals/bacteria in the mouth. Since we encourage you to avoid sugar if you want to keep your breath smelling fresh, choose a sugar-free or low sugar option like greek yogurt.
If you’ve read our article on foods and drinks that cause bad breath, you know that caffeine can cause some gnarly smells. Because of this, you might be surprised to learn that green tea has been shown to improve the smell of breath and prevent odor-causing bacteria from growing. Green tea is full of antioxidants that reduce the growth of bacteria and sulfuric compounds responsible for bad breath. Not a fan of green tea? Try green tea supplements instead.
Fennel seed is commonly used in cooking all over the world for its delicious and pungent flavor and aroma, but fennel seed is also an excellent tool for fighting bad breath. Chew a couple of fennel seeds to freshen your breath and keep yourself smelling herbaceous all day. The natural antibacterial properties of fennel seeds and their oils will fend off odorous bacteria so you can feel free to enjoy an intimate candlelit dinner.
While you should avoid citrus fruits, an orange peel can help freshen your breath in a pinch. Thoroughly wash the peel, then eat it. Orange peels are chock full of citric acids which will help stimulate your salivary glands. Saliva kills odor-causing bacteria, helping to fight halitosis. With the combined efforts of your saliva and the fragrant orange peel, you can feel confident in how your breath smells.
Cinnamon or Clove
Cinnamon and clove have antiseptic properties and extremely pungent odors, making them great for fighting bad breath. Carefully bite into a clove and move it around your mouth, but don’t swallow. Once you feel a slight numbing sensation, spit out the clove and enjoy your fresh breath.
If you prefer cinnamon, don’t use the powdered variety, unless you plan to film it and put it on YouTube. Suck and gently chew on a stick of cinnamon, this will give you all the antiseptic and breath-freshening benefits without causing a choking hazard.
Avoid Bad Breath
Besides practicing proper oral hygiene and trying some of these natural bad breath remedies, there are efforts that can be made to avoid bad breath in the first place. Bad breath can be a sign of an underlying condition, but most often it is simply due to an external factor like food, drink, or lifestyle. Bad breath due to an underlying issue will happen no matter what, but to avoid causing bad breath, try to follow these simple tricks:
- Brush, floss, and tongue scrape twice a day or after meals
- Eat regular meals. Eating irregularly can cause dry mouth, which in turn helps to grow odor-causing bacteria
- Avoid coffee and soda
- Avoid garlic and onions
- Brush after eating protein, dairy, sugary, and acidic foods
- Drink water regularly
Discover more ways to stay healthy naturally and find eco-friendly products by visiting Wowe Lifestyle.