How To Get Rid Of Bad Breath

Bad breath has an established clinical term. It’s halitosis. And, for those suffering from it, the condition can cause many dental complications and be a source of embarrassment.

The Colgate-Palmolive company consolidated a few studies around halitosis. The brief review states that 1 in 4 people have bad breath, with nearly 60 million US citizens suffering from chronic halitosis.

Having stated that, it’s easy enough to see that the condition is not a minor dental issue. So, before you learn how to get rid of bad breath, you first need to understand its primary causes.

What are those causes, you ask? Well, continue reading to know more.

What can cause bad breath?

source of bad breath

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Infrequent brushing and flossing contribute to the buildup of oral bacteria, which leads to a foul odor. However, some external sources can compound the issue. Chief among them is the use of tobacco products.

Besides increasing the risk of cancer and gum infections, frequent tobacco usage stains the teeth and causes plaque and tartar buildups. That alone can cause bad breath without even factoring in general cigarette odor.

Garlic and onions are two other contributors here. Still, it’s important to note that both are nutritional powerhouses that contain essential vitamins. Moderating your consumption and following it up with a good rinse would be the ideal way to strike a balance.

Digestive problems or conditions such as pericoronitis and tonsilitis can also be causal factors for halitosis. Additionally, antihistamines (allergy medicine) can dry up saliva, which can naturally resist plaque buildup. 

Consolidating everything, it’s evident that there’s no end to the things that can cause bad breath. The only way to combat it is to establish a strict oral hygiene routine and stick to it. Besides the immediate benefits, you will also develop better oral health over time.

Tips to get rid of bad breath

Outlining and maintaining a good oral hygiene plan takes a little research and a dash of consistency. Consulting a dentist will give you a more comprehensive perspective on the same. However, there are some things you can start doing on your own.

  1. Brush and floss daily

how to get rid of bad breath

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Plaque acids are known to cause bad breath and, if not cleaned for long, can lead to cavities and gingivitis.

So, make brushing and flossing a daily habit. Ideally, you should brush twice and floss at least once a day. If you are particularly concerned about mouth odor, you can brush your teeth thrice daily. However, it’s vital to be gentle while doing it. Brushing too hard can damage your teeth in some cases. 

It would also help if you change your toothbrush once every two to three months. Prolonged usage wears a toothbrush down and renders it ineffective in cleaning your mouth.

  1. Pick the right mouthwash and rinse often

Product packaging is always a factor that influences consumer choice. When it comes to dental care, it’s critical to avoid this.

The next time you’re out buying mouthwash, look for ones with mint or zinc salts. Mint directly fights mouth odor, while zinc reduces the sulfurous compounds usually found in your breath.

Research shows that regularly rinsing with zinc-based solutions can counteract halitosis for up to 6 months.

When choosing a mouthwash, you must ensure that it advocates more than just fresh breath. The solution must also be able to eliminate oral germs. Without that, mouthwashes will only be effective for an hour or two.

Post-meal rinsing with salt and warm water can help as well. Warm salt water balances the acidity levels in your mouth and flushes away any harmful bacteria.

  1. Drink more water and keep your mouth from drying up

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A dry mouth often enables the buildup of plaque. Saliva is the natural defense against this. However, conditions such as xerostomia can reduce the functioning of your salivary glands. You must increase your daily water intake if you face such a condition.

Dentists also recommend chewing sugar-free gums as they stimulate the release of saliva in your mouth. Either way, ensure that you are well hydrated at all times.

  1. Adopt a healthier diet

A protein-rich diet can be more challenging for your body to digest. Consequently, unmetabolized proteins release sulfurous gasses, which build up and cause recurrent instances of oral odor.

The same goes for coffee. When roasted, coffee beans produce sulfurous compounds, which can lead to halitosis. Sugar is another offender here. Harmful oral bacteria use sugar to produce particular acids that can cause bad breath. 

It would be best if you adopted a more balanced diet to manage all of that better. Include more fruits, vegetables, and herbs in your meals. For instance, fresh parsley and basil can deodorize and counteract the symptoms of sulfur compounds. 

  1. Use a tongue cleaner

tongue cleaner for bad breath

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The tongue, specifically the back end, plays host to significant concentrations of bacteria. Regularly cleaning that area while brushing can help mitigate any foul odor. 

You can also invest in a good tongue cleaner to make the process easier. Note that applying excessive force while cleaning your tongue can damage it. It’d be best to consult your dentist before opting for such an accessory.

If you get one, ensure that you are gentle while you clean your tongue.

What else do you need to know?

Multiple home remedies can help with bad breath. Some of them include:

  • Chewing fresh or roasted anise and fennel seeds
  • Consuming pineapple or oranges

 

Some homemade remedies include rinsing with baking soda or vinegar solutions. While they may be effective as a short-term method, consistent use of such solutions can damage your tooth enamel.

Before employing any DIY remedies, you must cross-reference everything with a medical expert.

Wrapping up

Contrary to popular belief, clean teeth do not necessarily indicate good oral hygiene. Bad breath, gum infections, and tooth decay are inter-linked oral issues that you can easily avoid with a comprehensive dental care routine.

Additionally, regularly consulting a dentist will help you manage chronic oral conditions. You can then plan a more effective routine and incorporate any prescribed medication.  

After all, your smile is precious to you. There’s no reason it should stop being so.

 

Reference Links:

https://www.scottedwardsdds.com/causes-of-bad-breath-and-underlying-reasons/

https://www.webmd.com/oral-health/features/get-rid-bad-breath

https://www.pennmedicine.org/updates/blogs/health-and-wellness/2016/february/causes-of-bad-breath

https://www.healthline.com/health/home-remedies-for-bad-breath#causes

https://www.medicinenet.com/how_can_i_permanently_get_rid_of_bad_breath/article.htm

How Does Your Dental Health Impact You? 

How often do you do a complete body checkup? How about a full dental checkup? Chances are that you rarely go to the dentist, even if you regularly visit a physician. But did you know that your oral health and general health are interconnected? 

Your oral health can affect your general health, and you can take it a an indication. Poor oral health is even linked to heart diseases, cancer, and diabetes. It also affects your quality of life and medical costs. 

Through this blog, you’ll be able to learn how your dental health is directly linked to your general health and other aspects of your life. 

 

Health Problems Related To Poor Oral Health 

 

  • Heart Diseases 

According to Harvard Health Publishing, people with gum disease (also known as periodontal disease) have two to three times the risk of having a heart attack, stroke, or other serious cardiovascular events.  

This is because the periodontal disease causes inflammation, leading to health problems like atherosclerosis. The bacteria can also infect the inner lining of your heart and cause endocarditis.  

  • Dementia 

Oral health problems like tooth loss, gingivitis, edentulousness, and dental caries are all associated with dementia. People with dementia have higher levels of plaque and can have other related issues as well. Some experience a reduced salivary flow. 

The bacteria causing gingivitis can also cause Alzheimer’s disease by entering your brain through the bloodstream or nerve channels. 

  • Respiratory Infections 

Your mouth is the direct doorway to your lungs. If the bacteria that enter your mouth are not removed, they can spread to the lungs. You can worsen lung diseases that include chronic inflammation like asthma by gum diseases.  

Some medicines prescribed for lung problems can also cause tooth damage.  

  • Diabetic complications 

Everyone knows that sugar is a significant cause of dental problems. But did you know that it also works the other way? Periodontal issues make it harder to control your blood sugar problems.  

Inflammation in the mouth can negatively affect the body’s ability to balance sugar levels. Swollen and bleeding gums can even be an indication of diabetes.  

 

Other Problems Caused By Poor Dental Health 

 

Poor dental care does not only affect your health but also affects other aspects of your life. Here are a few ways it can affect your wellbeing.  

  • Lower Self Esteem 

People with dental disorders seem to have lower self-esteem, affecting their psychosocial behavior. People might even be afraid to open their mouths if there are any visible deformities. Even minor problems like bad breath can make you conscious and hinder your performance. 

  • More Medical Cost 

Due to the lack of awareness about dental disorders, most people do not check for their coverage under medical insurance schemes. Insurance companies take advantage of this lack of awareness and conveniently omit them.  

Most health insurance plans do not cover dental care. People are not aware of the ways dental problems can affect a person’s general health. All this can cost the patients a lot. This is why it’s best to conduct regular dental checkups to detect any problems at an early stage. 

  • Problems Related To Pregnancy 

Pregnancy is a period marked by a lot of hormonal changes. It makes the pregnant mother more prone to oral infections. Mother’s suffering from periodontitis and gingivitis are at an increased risk of premature birth. The children might even be born with low birth weight. Serious health issues can affect the mother and child if the mother faces gum problems. 

 

How To Take Care Of Your Teeth 

 

  • Use a soft bristle toothbrush and brush twice a day. Make sure you cover all three surfaces of your teeth- the outside, the inside, and the biting surface. 
  • Use fluoridated toothpaste to strengthen teeth and finish with an antibacterial mouthwash.  
  • The sides of your teeth are extra prone to cavities and gum infections. Use floss or a floss substitute to scrape off the plaque. 
  • Make sure you brush before bed to minimize the effect of the bacteria that cause dry mouth. 
  • Protect your gum line from plaque to avoid gum damage and bone erosion. To do this, you can brush gently along your gum line. 
  • Visit a dentist regularly to remove tartar and check the side effects of any medication you take.  

 

Signs That You Need To See A Dentist 

 

  • Dirty teeth 

If you notice that your teeth change to a slight yellow hue, it might be a sign to see a dentist. This staining is typically caused by certain food items like turmeric, coffee, and tea. Chain smoking can also cause this color change. 

If you notice your gums bleeding after brushing or flossing, don’t dismiss it, considering it normal. It is one of the early symptoms of periodontal disease or gingivitis. Left untreated, it can weaken the bones and tissues around your teeth and cause tooth loss. Your dentist might recommend dental scaling to reverse gingivitis.  

  • Foul Odor From Mouth 

Bad breath or halitosis can be a sign of gingivitis, periodontitis, dry mouth (xerostomia), and mouth breathing. Artificial saliva, tablets, and oral shields can help tackle this situation. 

  • Toothache 

You should not ignore pain, sensitivity, and cavities in your teeth. It can be a sign of a broken tooth, abscess, damaged filling, enamel damage, or grinding your teeth. Visit a dentist to find the right reason and treat it in time to avoid inflammation and infection. 

 

Conclusion 

 

Remember that your oral health is linked to your general health and wellbeing. Don’t avoid any signs and symptoms and visit the dentist for regular checkups. Early detection is the best way to prevent diseases and increased dental expenditure.  

How to Clean your Teeth With Braces

At Pure Dental Arts, Patients with orthodontic braces often wonder about the best way to keep their teeth clean. After all, braces may contribute to a higher risk of cavities and gum disease if the patient doesn’t know how to clean her teeth properly. We will discuss how to do it here!

Frequently, after orthodontic treatment is completed and the brackets have been removed, we often see white marks left on the teeth, as well as swollen gums with possible chronic gum disease. These white spots occur 25% of the time. These regions are areas where the enamel has been demineralized, and is a precursor to cavities (caries). The main cause is inadequate cleaning.

Research has shown that electronic toothbrushes (think Sonicare or Oral B) showed greater brushing efficacy. However, proper brushing times, understanding of proper bristle positioning i.e. technique are still incredibly important. You should brush for the full 2 minutes, 1 minute per arch (upper and lower). Also the bristles must be positioned at a 45 degree angle to the gum line. The idea is to not only clean a little beneath the gumline, but to also clean the region just above where the orthodontic brackets are bonded to the tooth, as this edged area has a tendency to collect tremendous amounts of plaque.

It is important to brush with a fluoride tooth paste at least two times per day, after each meal, for a minimum of 2 minutes per session. You want to ensure that you brush all the teeth surfaces, front, back, and the chewing surfaces also. Special attention needs to be paid to the region between the wires and the teeth, and between the gums and the bracket, as that is where most of the food debris collects!

We also highly recommend regular flossing. Due to the wires and brackets, conventional floss will not work, you will need to implement floss threaders. It’s a bit like threading a needle, you insert one and of the floss (which has a plastic tip) underneath the arch wire. You then grab the floss on each end and work it in between the teeth until you have removed the plaque.

You may also want to implement other manual tools to aid in your efforts

A) Interdental tooth brush: it looks like a mini pipe cleaner. Use this to gently scrub in between the teeth, in all the nooks and crannies.

B) Water pick: this is a device that ejects a stream of water under pressure which can help free up pieces of food and “gunk” that has collected around your teeth and braces. Keep in mind it is not a substitute for brushing/flossing.

To find out more how to clean around braces, call Pure Dental Arts at 2064868600 today!.

References 

  1. Hock Hoe Goh and Bridget Double day. Aids for mechanical cleaning of teeth with fixed braces. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. January 2018. CD012931
  1. Franz Martin Sander et. Al. Dental care during orthodontic treatment with electric toothbrushes. J Orofac Orthop. September 2006

Welcome to our practice

Dear reader,

This is my first blog entry, so I think an introduction is in order. My name is Evan Chiang, and I’m a dentist at Queen AnneDental Care Dental. Together with my good friend and business partner, Yogesh Goel, we seek to provide high quality dental care in a convenient, personalized way. We are truly honored to be members of the Queen Anne community. This blog is an opportunity for me to express some of the thoughts that go on in the mind of a busy, everyday dentist “working in the trenches.” There will be plenty of (hopefully!) interesting anecdotes that will help shed some light on my mysterious, seemingly boring profession. I also look forward to reading your comments and thoughts. For Yogesh and myself, owning our own practice is truly a milestone in our lives, as we’ve spent most of our careers working for other people. So, in March the adventure begins! We welcome you take the journey with us!
 

How to save money at the Dentist

In the last blog, we discussed how dental insurance works and how the benefits provided by dental insurance are sometimes not adequate in dealing with the dental problems. Getting good quality Dental care is further complicated by the rising healthcare cost. In light of these facts, it is becoming more and more important to learn about ways to save money at the dentist. In this blog entry I intend to highlight a few points which I believe will help you rein in the cost of dental care.

1. Prevention is the key
As the old saying goes – An ounce of prevention is better than a pound of care. This could not be more true in today’s world. Not only it will save you tons of money in the long run but also save you time, potential discomfort, loss of function etc. Here are a few things to help prevent dental issues and hence the cost –
Regular brushing, flossing and using mouthwash
Regular dental checkup
Avoiding too much of acidic, sugary drinks (energy drinks, soda) – Acid and sugar are lethal combination that can rapidly destroy the teeth.

2. Taking care of small problems 
“I don’t have any pain, why should I go to a dentist?”
Many of us think that if there is no pain, it might be okay to wait. Majority of the dental problem do not hurt in the initial stage. You may not feel any pain, sensitivity for prolonged period of time. Most of dental problems are silent in nature. It is like having high blood pressure which do not interfere in day to day function unless it is out of control. Small cavities and the onset of gum infection are often painless and present no symptoms. At this stage, treating them is often easy, quick, painless and cheap. Treating disease or dental condition like cavities and gum infection in early stages can often save the teeth and the gum structure.
Waiting for it to hurt or cause problems like sensitivity, pain, fracture  is often an indication that problem has gone too far and may require more advance procedure to save the teeth which may be expensive and time consuming. Again, regular dental checkups is the key to help identify issues in a timely manner and avoid expensive treatments.

3. Doing it in stages
Sometime it is possible to do dental treatment in stages. Taking care of any active infection and pain is the first priority. After that, sometime it is possible to divide the treatment in stages – this can ensure that you don’t incur significant expenses upfront. It  helps in planning with regards to time and finances.

4. Alternative treatment
Ask if there are any alternatives available to the recommended dental treatment. Most of the times the proposed treatment is the ideal one but sometimes there are alternatives available. The alternative options may have some drawbacks or shortcoming but they can work at a more affordable cost.

5. Ask questions
It is very important that you get involved in the care. The more informed you are about your dental health, the better it will be for you in long run. Ask for a plan from your dentist. Think about what are your immediate and long term goals with respect to your teeth. Ask your dentist how they can help you achieve your goals.

Contact us at Queen Anne Dental at 206-486-8600 for any questions or concerns.