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Seven Tips For Avoiding Bad Breath

Oral Health Tips From Your Friendly Thousand Oaks Dentists

Anybody can have it – bad breath. It’s embarrassing, and if you’re lucky a friend or spouse will gently let you know there’s a… problem.

Medically, it’s called halitosis, and it can be the result of poor dental health habits or, worse, a sign of a possibly serious health problem. What you eat can make the problem worse.

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Before we give you some tips for avoiding bad breath, let’s cover the basics. When you eat, your body actually begins to break down food in your mouth. As a part of digestion, your body absorbs food in your blood stream and eventually carries it to your lungs. If you’re fond of foods like garlic or onions, your lungs — and breath — will continue to deal with the food’s odor until your body has completely processed it. Brushing your teeth, flossing and even using a mouthwash merely covers up the odor.

Lax oral health habits can be a root cause of bad breath. Improper brushing and a lack of flossing can leave food particles in your mouth, which promotes bacterial growth between the teeth, around the gums and on the tongue. The result? Bad breath.

Another root cause of bad breath may be a medical problem, including:

Seven Tips For Avoiding Bad Breath

  1. Practice good oral hygiene, beginning with regular and proper brushing and flossing. Brush at least twice a day, and remember to brush the tongue. Floss once a day.
  2. Replace your toothbrush every two to three months, and after an illness.
  3. Rinse your mouth with an antibacterial mouth rinse, which can help reduce bacteria. Ask us for a good recommendation on products.
  4. If you wear dentures, remove them at night and clean them thoroughly before you replace them in the morning.
  5. Get regular dental checkups — at least twice a year.
  6. If you smoke or use other tobacco-based products, stop! That will help your overall health immensely.
  7. A good rule of thumb is to drink a number of ounces of water equal to half your body weight. So if you weigh 150 pounds, try to drink 75 ounces of water. If you weigh 200 pounds, drink 100 ounces etc.

If you try all of these tips and still have bad breath, come in for a visit. We can check to see if your mouth is healthy and whether the odor is originating in your mouth. If not, we may refer you to your family doctor or a specialist.