Bad breath or halitosis is often a cause of concern for the affected individual. It can be very embarrassing and can also keep the person feeling very uncomfortable. Here are some remedies that can ward off the foul odor, leaving you with a fresh breath. The best way of preventing bad breath is by practicing good oral hygiene. It is very important to brush and floss your teeth twice a day, preferably before going to sleep at night and on waking up in the morning. This helps to get rid of the bacteria that reside in between the teeth and gums.
Gently scraping the tongue using a tongue-cleaner can help to remove the remaining odor-causing microbes. It is advisable to gargle using warm water and peppermint oil or a mouthwash containing chlorine dioxide every day. Alcohol-based mouthwashes are not recommended as they decrease salivation and favor the release of odorous sulfur-containing compounds by anaerobic microbes.
Follow a healthy lifestyle. Eat more greens and fresh fruits. Leafy vegetables contain chlorophyll, which freshens up the breath and curbs offensive smell. On the other hand, fruits like guavas, bananas, and papaya stimulate the secretion of saliva, which in turn helps to rinse the mouth and dissolve the odor producing volatile sulfur compounds. Chew fennel seeds (saunf), cardamom (elaichi) or caraway seeds (shahi jeera) to kill harmful bacteria in the mouth. Eat yogurt (curds) twice a day to minimize tooth decay and inhibit bacterial growth.
Stay away from simple sugars and carbohydrate-rich foods as they promote the development of bad breath. Choose a sugar-free chewing gum and refrain from eating spicy, high-fat foods. Avoid skipping meals and remain stress-free. Further, keep your body well hydrated by drinking plenty of water. Dehydration often leads to a dry mouth, which is an ideal environment for the multiplication of anaerobic bacteria that cause bad breath. Lastly, quit smoking and go for regular dental checkups to screen for gingivitis and other periodontal diseases.