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Tips to Naturally Freshen Breath

Tips to Naturally Freshen Breath

Wednesday, November 02, 2022

Bad breath is off-putting, whether we notice it on ourselves or others. And unfortunately, even people with the best dental hygiene can often find themselves running afoul of the dreaded halitosis. Mints and gum can only go so far as to mask the issue. If you find you have recurring or constant bad breath, you may need to make some more substantial changes to your habits.

In this article, we will take a look at how and why bad breath forms and some steps you can take at home to get yourself to fresh breath: naturally.


Tips to Naturally Freshen Breath

Your saliva performs the critical task of moistening food for easier digestion and keeping your teeth and gums healthy by neutralizing plaque and acids produced by food. It contains the enzyme amylase and phosphorus fluoride that strengthens tooth enamel, protecting it from tooth decay.

In a sense, saliva performs some self-cleaning functions within your mouth. Your mouth has its own little ecosystem. Saliva keeps harmful bacteria from building up in your mouth. But as your mouth dries out or other imbalances occur, these bacteria build up in the mouth and begin to decay, causing unpleasant tastes and foul odors.

Here are our top six tips to help naturally freshen your breath.

1. Keep Hydrated

Since dry mouth is one of the top causes of bad breath, making sure to stay hydrated throughout each day is an easy way to keep your mouth and the rest of your body healthy. If you start to feel like your mouth is getting dry, take a drink or two.

Don’t reach for juice, soda, or other energy drinks, as those can leave your mouth more dehydrated than before. Try to go for plain or only lightly flavored water.

2. Eat Fruits and Vegetables

Crunchy fruits and vegetables are delicious. They can also help lessen bad breath by helping scrape bacteria off your teeth! Carrots, apples, celery, and others act as tasty and natural toothbrushes that keep you healthy.

3. Stop Mouth Breathing

When you breathe through your mouth, it dries out membranes and saliva, preventing it from performing that cleaning function. The more you breathe through your mouth, the drier it becomes over time, and the worse your breath can get.

The most common time people breathe through their mouth is when they are sleeping, so it can be a little challenging to tell if that is the source of your bad breath. If you don’t have a partner who can watch out for nighttime mouth breathing, in addition to bad breath and a dry mouth, look for these additional symptoms:

  • Snoring during the night
  • Hoarseness when speaking
  • Waking up tired, with chronic fatigue, and brain fog
  • Dark circles under the eyes
  • Increased allergy symptoms

Breathing through our mouths is an automatic response by our body when some obstruction partially or fully blocks our nasal airway. If allergies or an infection are causing mouth breathing, they are often easy to clear up with medications. But other causes can be challenging to address and usually involve some form of retraining or physical intervention.

If you suspect you are not regularly breathing through your nose at night or during the day, you need to bring it up with a healthcare professional.

4. Floss and Brush Thoroughly

We should all be brushing our teeth twice a day, and you are flossing too, right… right? If not, make an effort to add flossing into your daily oral hygiene routine.

When brushing, don’t neglect your tongue! Bacteria likes to hide in all the nooks and crannies of our mouths, so make sure you get those areas clean regularly and thoroughly.

5. Reach for Alcohol-Free Mouthwashes

If you are sure you’ve got the best brush and floss routine you can, double-check what mouthwash you may be using. Washes are great at helping clean out impossible or hard-to-reach areas of the mouth, but many over-the-counter options contain alcohol, which dries the mouth.

Make sure the brand you buy is alcohol-free, or make your own at home. Warm salt water is a great, if not great tasting, way to help tackle chronic bad breath. You can find a variety of recipes online, so find one that works for you. Apple cider vinegar is a common ingredient that helps boost cleaning.

6. Change Your Toothbrush

For many, we may not think about swapping out the toothbrush we use until we go to the dentist and get a new one for free. But you should be making sure to get a new brush head every three months.

IJustWantTo® Correct My Tongue Thrust Program

What many people don’t realize is that the tongue plays a more significant role in our bodies than we think. When the tongue isn’t functioning correctly, it can disrupt your whole airway or leave you breathing through your mouth. Tongue thrust is a habit someone develops when they push their tongue against their front teeth perpetually, which can lead to a variety of issues, including mouth-breathing, sleep apnea, dental problems, and more.

The CorrectMyTongueThrust program can effectively instruct you how to swallow correctly, stop mouth breathing, and begin nasal breathing. IJustWantTo® Correct My Tongue Thrust is a seven-week program that guides you through tongue exercises to correct your tongue thrust and eliminate snoring.

We can help correct tongue thrust without the use of medicine, surgery, or invasive treatments. Visit our website or contact us for additional information.

Janet M. Bennett

Written by:

Janet Bennett, M.Ed., CCC-SLP, is a Speech Pathologist in private practice in Asheville, NC, since 1977. She specializes in treating tongue thrust, a swallowing disorder that can result in buckteeth, an open bite, a lisp, snoring, and other problems that have not yet been made known to most people.