Is bad breath ruining your life?
You can be dressed to the nines, have the looks of a young George Clooney and the charm of a fairy tale prince, but if you have bad breath, you’re as good as gone.
Most of the time we deal with it through short term solutions, like a piece of gum or a tic-tac. Even those of us who adhere to rigorous teeth brushing schedule will still deal with “dragon breath” sometimes.
The medical community refers to it as halitosis. The culprit behind that smell? Volatile sulphur compounds. They’re produced in your mouth when it’s not cleaned enough, which then causes the odour. So what can you do to fix that?
Clean those teeth regularly
First and foremost, you must stick to a strict schedule of brushing your teeth. The golden rule is twice per day, in order to remove the plaque that can accumulate. Try using a toothpaste that includes baking soda as an ingredient (such as Arm & Hammer Advance White—$4); it actually serves as neutraliser for odours. And no matter what, don’t forget about flossing; left over food particles is a feeding ground for bacteria.
Scrape your tongue
Since your tongue has many grooves on it, it can trap bacteria easily. Hence why cleaning your tongue is one of the most important dental hygiene techniques. Some of us may already use our tooth brush to get the tongue job done, but it doesn’t have the same effect as using a tongue scraper (e.g., GUM Dual Action Tongue Cleaner—$3).
According to a Cochrane review of scientific literature, a study found that people who used a tongue scraper reduced volatile sulphur compounds by 42 per cent, compared to 33 per cent who just used their toothbrush to brush their tongue.
Hydrate your mouth
You know that feeling when you wake up in the morning after a wild bender and your cheeks, mouth and tongue feel as dry as that empty vodka bottle resting on the kitchen table? That’s “dry mouth” and it can cause dead cells in your mouth to build up. If you don’t have any saliva to wash them away, bacteria will multiply, which then causes bad breath. The optimal amount of water to drink per day is about eight glasses.
And if you want to take extra precaution, drink more tea. According to findings of the American Society for Microbiology, black and green tea contain chemical components called polyphenols, which can prevent the growth of bacteria that leads to bad breath.
Jeremy Singer is a freelance writer and reporter from Toronto. He has a journalism degree from Ryerson University, and enjoys covering all aspects of men’s lifestyle and pop culture. He hopes to one day try on an $8,000 suit but not buy it, because he’s afraid of commitment. Feel free to contact him on Twitter or at his website(jeremysingeronline.com).