Grabbing a mint or a piece of gum may seem a good solution for some people, as it masks the problem. Another temporary solution to the problem is to use a mouthwash or mouth spray, but if you use this method, be careful and choose one that has no alcohol at all.
However, those methods don’t address the root causes of bad breath, as it can be caused by some health conditions, foods or habits.
Some key tips to improve your daily habits:
- keep your mouth clean (brush thoroughly and clean your tongue at least twice a day and floss daily),
- keep your mouth moist (saliva helps to clean your mouth; try sucking on sugarless mints to stimulate saliva production),
- and don’t stress out (stress can dry out your mouth, causing bad breath).
However, if the problem persists despite all this, you may have some kind of nutritional deficiency or underlying health condition that requires other interventions.
Here you have some other recommendations to address the problem:
- drink more water (dehydration is one of the most common causes of bad breath),
- supplement with zinc (zinc helps to maintain a clean, bacteria-free mouth),
- use herbs daily (it is important to regularly flush your system),
- avoid potent foods (as garlic and onion) and tobacco and ban certain beverages (such as coffee, beer, wine, and whiskey, because they leave a residue that can attach to the plaque in your mouth and enter your digestive system),
- include more raw foods (carrots, celery, and apples, for example, as crunchy fruits and vegetables rich in fiber are also beneficial in the fight against this condition) and cheese (because it also fights plaque and mouth odor) in your diet.
In around 80% of cases, bad breath is due to something in the mouth. Besides a dirty mouth, the usual cause is a plaque. Another possible source of odor can be food being trapped between teeth. Furthermore, persistent bad breath may be caused by a dental problem (such as an undiagnosed cavity). Occasionally, this condition is due to something in the respiratory tract (such as lung infection), gastrointestinal tract or by a systemic condition (diabetes, for example, can give the breath an unpleasant chemical smell).
Here you have some home remedies for bad breath.
1. Baking soda
Baking soda is a great way to clean your teeth and get fresh breath.
- Sprinkle some baking soda into your palm.
- Dip a damp toothbrush into the baking soda.
- Brush your teeth.
- Swish water around your mouth for at least 20 seconds to clean it.
3. Aromatic spices
- Chew on the seeds of aromatic spices (clove, cardamom or fennel) after meals, because the seeds of these spices have antimicrobial properties.
4. Stinging nettle tea
This is a powerful herb that has been proved to purify the blood and eliminate toxins from the body.
- A few handfuls nettles.
- 4-5 cups water.
- A pinch of sugar/some honey.
- Put on a good pair of gloves and pick a few good handfuls of young nettles.
- Trim off the leaves and wash well to remove dirt.
- Add to a deep saucepan and add the water.
- Boil gently for 10-15 minutes (the longer you boil, the stronger your tea will become).
- Strain the nettle tea into your cup.
- Add some sugar or honey to sweeten your tea.
- You can also add a slice of lemon, which will also change the color from dark greenish to a light pinkish color (this is caused by the change in the pH).
- If you prefer, chill your tea in the fridge for 2 hours and then enjoy your stinging nettle tea.
- Drink this tea daily.
5. Create your own gargle
- Extract of sage.
- Extract of Calendula.
- Some myrrh gum.
- Mix extracts of sage, calendula, and myrrh gum in equal proportions.
- Gargle with the mixture 4 times a day.
- Keep the mouthwash in a sealed jar at room temperature.
You can also create a simple gargle with 1 teaspoon of salt and 1 glass of water (gargle 3 times a day).
Parsley is a breath-saver because it contains chlorophyll, which is a well-known breath deodorizer.
- 1 spring/a few handfuls parsley (depending on the instructions).
- watercress (optional).
- Chew a sprig of parsley thoroughly
- Or toss a few handfuls of parsley (you can add some watercress too) in a juicer and sip the juice when you need to refresh your breath.
7. Mustard oil and salt
- ½ teaspoon table salt.
- 1 teaspoon mustard oil.
- Mix ½ teaspoon of salt and 1 teaspoon of mustard oil.
- Massage the gums with this mixture (it tightens the gums, prevents gum disease and keeps bad breath away).
8. Apple cider vinegar
- ½ teaspoon apple cider vinegar.
- 1 glass water.
- Dilute a ½ teaspoon of apple cider vinegar in 1 glass of water.
- Use this solution as a mouthwash.
Eating an orange, lemon or grapefruit is a good way of fighting bad breath as the acid in the fruit stops the formation of bacteria.