Bad breath affects everyone at some point in their lives, whether it is a temporary condition caused by strong-tasting foods or something more permanent created by an underlying medical condition. While some people turn to mouthwashes and special toothpastes for relief from embarrassing halitosis, others try home remedies for bad breath.
What Exactly is Bad Breath?
Bad breath is the result of anaerobic bacteria overwhelming the mouth and excreting enormous amounts of foul-smelling sulfur. Mouth debris, mucus and food particles that remain in the mouth due to poor oral hygiene habits provide the bacteria with proteins on which it thrives. Technically, volatile sulfur compounds released by oral anaerobes give the breath that "rotten egg" smell which is so offensive to others and distressing to the sufferer. In addition to a mouth full of food particles that haven't been properly rinsed away, the oxygen content has also been greatly reduced due to poor oral hygiene. Anaerobic bacteria do not grow in oxygenated, clean environments and therefore cannot produce VSCs, or volatile sulfur compounds. Halitosis is primarily caused by these conditions:
- Dry mouth--xerostomia, or dry mouth, results in decreased saliva flow which directly affects the mouth's ability to remove debris and remain aerated. Dry mouth is often caused by chronic sinusitis, allergies, post nasal drip, certain medications and oral/nasal cavity deformities
- Dental problems--not brushing and flossing regularly allows plaque to erode teeth and gums. Plaque is rich in anaerobic bacteria the main culprit in producing VSCs and will cause gingivitis, periodontal disease and tooth decay
- Diseases--uncontrolled diabetes, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and several autoimmune diseases increase the anaerobic condition in the mouth which results in chronic halitosis.
Oral Hygiene Tips to Reduce Bad Breath
Simple home remedies for bad breath that are related to good oral hygiene practices include:
- Brushing your teeth after each meal
- Flossing twice a day--once in the morning and before going to bed
- Brushing your tongue with your toothbrush or a tongue scraper
- If you wear dentures, make sure you clean them twice a day with a toothbrush
- Drinking several glasses of water each day--water keeps the mouth moist, oxygenated and helps rinse away food particles that are attractive to bacteria
- Reduce the amount of coffee and sugary beverages consumed--adjusting your diet to contain more fiber may also help bad breath
- Get regular dental checkups and cleanings--dentists recommend cleanings every six months
Always brush your teeth before going to bed to avoid leaving food particles and mucus in the mouth overnight. Sleeping is the optimal time for anaerobic bacteria to produce large amounts of VSCs because salivary glands secrete less saliva during sleep. In addition, mouth-breathing commonly occurs when a sleeping person lies on his back or side. As a result, odorous "morning breath" develops as anaerobic bacteria busily consumes mouth debris left in the mouth for eight hours.
Dr. Katz Describing "What is bad breath?"
Using TheraBreath as Part of Your Daily Oral Hygiene Program
Effectively enhancing these oral hygiene tips is easy when you integrate TheraBreath products in with brushing and flossing. Dr. Katz's famous line of TheraBreath products are used by millions of people who suffer from bad breath and dry mouth. By including a proprietary ingredient called OXYD-8 (discovered exclusively by Dr. Katz) in his oral products, Dr. Katz has provided halitosis sufferers with the ability to experience fresh, clean breath and better dental checkups. The unique, oxygenating compound OXYD-8 eliminates anaerobic bacteria and the sulfurous compounds they excrete which directly causes bad breath. Dr. Katz also combines his OXYD-8 with other, halitosis-blasting ingredients such as tea tree oil, xylitol, whole leaf aloe vera and zinc gluconate to create the most powerful bad breath remedy available today. The TheraBreath Starter Kit provides an excellent introduction to TheraBreath's dynamic ability to get rid of even the worst bad breath. This kit includes everything you need to begin cleaning your mouth, increasing saliva flow and eradicating the bacteria responsible for foul mouth odors. Customers purchasing the kit receive:
- 1 tube of TheraBreath toothpaste (contains no harsh detergents or sugars)
- 1 bottle of TheraBreath Oral Rinse
- 2 AktivOxigen tablets
- 1 mixing bottle for AktivOxigen rinse (introduces oxygen into the mouth to wipe out anaerobes)
- 1 TheraBreath Fresh Breath Throat Spray
- 1 TheraBreath PLUS PowerDrops
- 2 packs (24 pieces) of TheraBreath Chewing Gum
- 1 Roll (12 mints) of ZOX Mints
- 1 Soft-bristled toothbrush and tongue cleanerdesigned by Dr. Katz
In addition to eliminating bad breath and morning breath, users who once experienced sour or metallic tastes will be pleasantly surprised to discover that TheraBreath products also removes this disagreeable condition.
Other Home Remedies for Bad Breath
Although not nearly as effective as TheraBreath products, some home remedies for bad breath use herbs and other kitchen items that mask halitosis in an emergency, especially following a meal containing strong-smelling foods such as onions, garlic or dairy products. Some of these temporary "folk" remedies include:
- Chewing cloves or parsley sprigs
- Rinsing the mouth with a mix of lemon juice and water
- Mixing peppermint leaves and water in a blender and gargling with the mixture
- Eating guava several times a week may help reduce bad breath and enhance oral health. Guava contains malic and oxalic acid as well as manganese and calcium, all ingredients that contribute to teeth and gum health
- Eating an apple after each meal freshens breath and removes larger food particles stuck between teeth
- Gargling with salt water and using saline nasal sprays to reduce the amount of post nasal drip and mucus in the throat and mouth
Brushing with a paste made from baking soda and water may help reduce oral acidity and the presence of halitosis. However, it does not increase the amount of oxygen and saliva in the mouth, two powerful actions provided exclusively by TheraBreath products which directly kill anaerobic bacteria by thoroughly oxygenating the mouth and eliminating sulfurous excrement emitted by this type of harmful bacteria.