Lately, it seems that you have bad breath no matter what you do. Even if you have not eaten anything pungent like onions or garlic and have been meticulous with brushing and flossing your teeth, you find that the odor lingers. If you are living with chronic bad breath, also known as halitosis, there are a couple of things you can do besides performing your regular oral hygiene routine that can help lessen the odor as well as the odd taste in your mouth.
1. Brush and/or Scrape Your Tongue
Besides dental issues such as gum disease or a bad tooth, bad breath is often caused by bacteria that are allowed to remain and grow in the dark, moist areas of your mouth. While brushing and flossing your teeth can help remove bacteria in those areas as well as any food particles on which they feed, the tongue can often be forgotten when it comes time to clean your mouth.
Food residue and bacteria can become stuck in the tiny crevices of the tongue, where the germs grow and give off an odor as one of their byproducts. Whenever you brush your teeth, make sure that you also brush the surface of your tongue. You can also purchase a flexible, plastic scraper specifically designed for deep-cleaning the tongue.
2. Chew Sugarless Gum to Keep Your Mouth Moist
Along with cleaning your tongue while brushing your teeth, you can help to combat your chronic bad breath by keeping your mouth moist in between. When your mouth gets dry, this means that there is less saliva production, with saliva being your mouth's natural cleansing agent.
To keep your mouth moist, chew sugarless gum to stimulate the production of saliva in your mouth. Do not chew on gums or mints that contain sugar. While these will help to moisten your mouth, they will also leave a sugary residue on your teeth, gums, and tongue that will only serve to breed more odor-producing bacteria which can also lead to tooth decay.
If you still cannot sweeten your breath after following the tips above and brushing and flossing your teeth several times a day, your bad breath could be a sign of a problem such as gingivitis or tooth decay. Make an appointment with a family dentist to get a checkup so they can investigate your bad breath and develop a plan to treat the root cause of it.