Dental Care

Cures for Bad Breath


Cures for bad breath? We've already touched on this topic in another article, but if you've tried the tips we gave you there and your bad breath is still a problem, you might want a little additional help. 

In this article we'll give you some more detailed information on bad breath along with some other tips you can use to help you eliminate the problem.

An accumulation of tartar (known as "calculus" within the dental profession) can interfere with brushing and flossing your teeth thoroughly and effectively. 

And, not only can the presence of tartar on your teeth contribute to the formation of cavities, it can lead to the development of gum disease if it's not removed regularly. 

Cures for bad breath – Professional Cleaning

Obviously, it's important to eliminate the tartar and other debris that builds up on your teeth.

Fortunately, your dentist or dental hygienist can professionally clean your teeth and remove the troublesome tartar that has accumulated there. 

It's natural for some tartar to build up on your teeth even if you've been brushing and flossing regularly, so it's important to have your teeth cleaned at your dentist's office periodically.  Most dentists recommend you have it done at least annually.

In addition, some people have a difficult time simply learning the proper techniques for brushing and flossing their teeth effectively. 

After examining your teeth and gums, your dentist or dental hygienist can give you instructions on how to brush and floss properly, along with some tips and pointers that could help with your specific situation.

Cures for bad breath – Gum Health

During your appointment, your dentist will also evaluate your gums for the presence or likelihood of developing gum disease ("periodontal disease"). 

This insidious condition can cause a significant amount of damage to not only the gums themselves, but the bone that lies beneath the surface of the gums.  The damage can give rise to the formation of deep spaces (called "periodontal pockets") located between the teeth and gums. 

Periodontal pockets can be extremely difficult (if not impossible) for a non-professional to clean out, and they provide an almost perfect breeding ground for the anaerobic oral bacteria that are responsible for bad breath.

The best cures for bad breath are therefore prevention and regular maintenance.

Other Origins and Cures for Bad Breath

You might be surprised to learn this, but in most cases, the single most important thing you can do to eliminate your bad breath is clean your tongue more regularly and thoroughly. 

The oral bacteria that cause bad breath also love living on the surface of your tongue. 

There's a simple little test for bad breath that involves scraping your tongue with a teaspoon.  As you scrape your tongue from the back toward the front, the spoon will collect saliva, bacteria and odor from your tongue's surface.  After letting the material on the spoon dry for a couple of minutes, you simply sniff it.  If it smells foul, you have bad breath. 

Most people don't realize that cleaning their tongue regularly is the easiest and one of the most effective cures for bad breath. 

In fact, research studies have shown that up to 90% of all bad breath is caused by bacteria living on the tongue.

The odors emanating from the front ("anterior") portion of your tongue will usually be less foul than those from the rear ("posterior") portion.  The anatomy and physiology of the tongue and mouth are responsible for this difference. 

The anterior of the tongue is somewhat "self-cleansing" and its population of odor-producing bacteria is therefore likely to be smaller than that on the posterior portion. 

Many of the physiological functions of your tongue involve touching the anterior of the tongue firmly against the hard palate, creating a friction which tends to cleanse that portion of the tongue and prevent significant accumulations of bacteria. 

In contrast, the posterior of the tongue comes into contact with the soft palate.  This contact is comparatively gentle and simply does not provide sufficient friction to provide any significant cleansing effect. 

As a result, the lion's share of the odor-causing bacteria within your mouth typically inhabits the posterior of the tongue.

Conclusions

If you're able to reduce the amount of odor-producing bacteria on your tongue, you'll take a giant step forward toward eliminating your bad breath. 

We'll discuss the techniques you can use to clean your tongue thoroughly in a separate article.

 

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