Our mouth is home to a million bacteria. Grossed out? Well, this is a fact! Some of these bacteria are naturally present as part of the oral ecosystem while others are there because you let them be there! Yes, by not maintaining proper oral hygiene! But, how do you know if you have been doing a good job at maintaining good oral hygiene? One of the best ways to determine is by the odor of your breath. Most people complain of bad breath, also called halitosis, and this is due to the bacteria present in the mouth. The large number of bacteria in the mouth feed on food debris and release gases, that cause a bad odor emanating from the mouth.
Most people do not realize that they have a bad breath until they have been told by someone close to them and this can be quite embarrassing isn’t it? But, that’s not the only concern. Bad breath can be a sign of some underlying health issue. While there are many home remedies for bad breath that we will discuss below, sometimes, the bad breath is a sign of a severe dental infection in the gums or the underlying bone. In such a case, home remedies for bad breath can have a limited benefit and calls for a visit to the dentist.
Home Remedies for Bad Breath
Drinking enough water is one of the simplest steps you can take to curb bad breath. When your mouth doesn’t have enough moisture to produce saliva, odor-causing bacteria can develop. Side effects from certain medications, medical conditions and diseases can deprive you of that necessary moisture, but not getting enough water can also contribute to dry mouth in otherwise healthy people.
Staying hydrated is important, particularly before and after heavy exercise, when rapid breath can increase dry mouth. While it’s a healthy practice in and of itself, be sure to drink water when you first wake up. Dry mouth can occur while you’re asleep, so hydrating first thing in the morning gives you a jump on a night’s worth of collected bacteria.
2. Chewing gum:
Some people hope the minty flavor of gum will mask their bad breath. But a stick every now and then can do even more. It can help you make more saliva — and sugar-free kinds sweetened with xylitol fight the growth of bad bacteria in your mouth.
3. Lemon juice:
Whether you want to get rid of the bad smell in your mouth for your own sake or the sake of others, lemon juice is a great option. Both lemon and orange come up with the same result, so choose whichever you like best. The acidity of the fruits prompts your mouth to produce more saliva.
4. Mint leafs:
The mint leaf is often used for creating a mint sauce or mint tea, but it can also be used for bad breath. Mint leaves are often quite small, so they’re easy to pop in your mouth and place underneath your tongue. You don’t need to chew on or eat the mint leaf. Just leave it under your tongue for a few minutes and take it back out.
Baking soda may not be the most pleasant of home remedies for bad breath, but it’s certainly effective. You can create your own mouthwash with baking soda and peppermint essential oil. Just add a spoonful of baking powder and a few drops of peppermint essential oil to water. Gargle for a few minutes twice a day and should see an improvement within days.
6. Apple cider vinegar:
Drinking a few sips of apple cider vinegar will ensure you don’t have to hold your breath in a crowd. Apple cider vinegar is a great option for balancing the PH levels in your mouth, which means it can successfully remedy bad breath. You can take this on its own or add a few spoonful to water. Taking it before your meal will mean you’re less likely to suffer from bad breath after eating and it can help your digestive system.
This is a great option for anyone who likes to dine out. Just a sprig of parsley can neutralize bad breath in minutes. Chewing on a sprig after dinner when you’re with company is a great way to minimize the risk of bad breath.
Parsley has chlorophyll in it, which neutralizes bacteria in the mouth. If you want to make extra sure your bad breath disappears, dip your parsley into some table vinegar before chewing it.
Regular mouth wash not working for you! Try cinnamon as a home remedy for bad breath instead. Add one spoonful of cinnamon, a bay leaf and some cardamom seeds to hot water and let it rest for a few minutes. Strain the mixture and use what’s left as a mouthwash.
Cinnamon is another ingredient that can naturally clean bacteria to reduce dental problems and disguise bad breath.
9. Low protein intake:
During digestion, the body breaks down proteins with ammonia. The more protein you eat, the higher the amount of ammonia used during this process. If you eat a high protein diet, you’ll produce too much ammonia. You’ll notice that your breath smells similar to urine or fish.
10. Distress yourself:
Stress actually can contribute to dragon breath. People under chronic stress tend to suffer from gum disease more and often eat less, and both of these things lead to halitosis. Taking ten minutes before bed or when you wake up to meditate can significantly lower the amount of stress you feel. Mindfulness meditation relaxes the body and mind, and in the long run, makes people perceive situations differently so they don’t trigger the stress response the way they did before.
Yoga also helps reduce stress through breathing, meditation, stretching, and movements. Though, if yoga isn’t your thing, any exercise boosts endorphins and lowers cortisol levels in the body.
11. Salt water rinse:
A salt water (saline solution) rinse can prevent the buildup of infectious bacteria in the mouth or throat. The effect is probably due to salt water’s slight acidity. This prevents the ‘alkalizing’ environment that encourages the growth of microbes that cause bad breath.
12. Aloe vera:
Aloe Vera is a natural antifungal and antibacterial plant extract. Research has shown it’s as effective as chlorhexidine mouthwash at reducing plaque. It also boosts the creation of collagen, improving the mouth’s ability to heal. You can make your own Aloe Vera mouthwash to combat bad breath. Simply boil some water and add aloe Vera gel once it is cooled. You can also add peppermint oil to taste.
Bad breath is a common complaint, and there are many different causes. Most cases are due to the presence of too many harmful bacteria in the mouth. There are various natural home remedies people can try to alleviate bad breath. Most of these remedies have scientific research to back them, although some require further investigation.