It’s the season to get together! As it gets closer to time with family, we may do our best to impress those around us. This extends to our breath too. If you are worried, here are some tips to help.
Did you know that over 40 million people in the U.S have bad breath? Most of the time you aren’t able to smell your own breath! Because of the embarrassment, often times we don’t mention it when we smell others breath.
What is Bad Breath?
It’s your oral bacteria which are living, eating, and breeding organisms. You know how all living things need food and needs to dispose of it? That’s what is happening in your mouth! Use this as motivation to start a better dental routine!
Typically, we all wake up with bad breath because there is no constant saliva flow as we sleep. Saliva helps wash away bacteria growth. A reminder to why we brush and floss before we go to bed and when we wake up.
What Causes Bad Breath?
- Smoking and Chewing Tobacco
- Poor Dental Hygiene
- Dry Mouth
The worst cause is smoking because it reduces saliva flow. Dry mouth occurs when your mouth doesn’t produce enough saliva. It is your mouth’s natural defense and without it plaque and bacteria build up faster.
Certain drinks like alcohol and coffee dry out your mouth as well. Sugary foods and drinks are bacteria’s favorite, it helps them grow and multiply faster. It’s important to brush and floss to help prevent plaque build-up.
Keep a close eye on your tongue as well. Your tongue doesn’t have a smooth surface; food debris, bacteria, and dead cells can be trapped there. Over time, a coating forms across and as it gets thicker, the odor will become stronger.
If you are stuck on what to bring for your gathering try peppermint bark. It’s a nice breath refresher for anyone that needs it! Pro Tip: Use dark chocolate chips – it’s good for your teeth (in moderation)!
If you are questioning, “How in the world is dark chocolate good for my teeth?” The answer is dark chocolate contains polyphenols which helps fight the growth of bacteria in your mouth, reducing the risk of tooth decay. It can also offset bad breath!
Have a great holiday season!
Dr. Dhariwal, DDS
2370 Maritime Dr.
Elk Grove, CA 95758