Remember the old saying "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure." It perfectly applies to bad breath. If you don't take appropriate steps to prevent bad breath in its early stage, you're making your life harder.
1. Drink plenty of water
Yes, it's as simple as that. Do you know what causes bad breath? It's the anaerobic bacteria that break down protein and sugar into volatile sulphur compounds (VSCs) to create foul smell. Anaerobic bacteria thrive on dry conditions. By drinking water frequently, you create a bitter environment for these bacteria.
Furthermore, water dilutes the concentration of VSCs. Consequently, the odour coming from your mouth may not be strong enough to be offensive. So take a bottle of spring water wherever you go.
2. Maintain a good oral hygiene
Ok, I honestly apologize if you have bad breath, despite having an excellent oral hygiene. It's a myth that good oral hygiene alone eliminates bad breath.
However, good hygiene helps for sure. If you don't brush and floss two times a day, you should immediately start doing so. In addition, you need to clean your tongue using a brush or tongue scraper. Anaerobic bacteria live on the back of your tongue. A clean pink tongue makes the conditions unattractive for these bacteria.
3. Treat existing oral diseases
Your bad breath may be caused by existing oral diseases such as gum disease and candida infection. If this is the case, you need to go see your dentist as soon as possible.
Although in my own experience dentists are a little of help in treating halitosis, they could treat common oral diseases more effectively. Furthermore, you should also make sure that any dental work such as mercury fillings doesn't negatively affect your oral health.
4. Avoid commercial mouthwashes
Here you go, you didn't expect this. But this is essential. Many commercial mouthwashes contain large amount of alcohol. Alcohol leads to dry mouth.
Dry mouth is a perfect condition for anaerobic bacteria to manufacture VSCs-- not to mention bad breath. In addition to alcohol, most commercial mouthwashes contain unnecessary ingredients such as flavour and colour to make them attractive to general public. This is why you see the same mouthwash in four different colours.
After all, constant use of such mouthwashes could lead to chronic bad breath, a condition that is much harder to treat. Moreover, commercial mouthwashes have some other potential health hazards.
5. Use natural antibiotics
Nature provides us its own antibiotics through herbs. Many herbs have antibiotics characteristics. Fresh parsley, and aloe vera are effective in preventing bad breath.
Chew fresh parsley whenever you can; it doesn't only detoxify your mouth but it also contains abundant chlorophyll which sweetens your breath. Furthermore, the chewing act increases the flow of saliva that helps avoid dry mouth.
Make your own mouthwash using aloe vera juice. Buy diluted aloe vera juice in your local pharmacy or herbal store. Add two teaspoons of it to a tumbler of water. Then gaggle your mouth with this solution.
6. Eat crisp fruits and vegetables
By eating crisp fruits and vegetables such as apple, celery, cucumber and carrot, your mouth is naturally cleaned. Plaque and food particles between your teeth and gums are removed during this process. I call this "auto-floss."
Furthermore, you also increase your saliva flow when you eat crisp food. After all, above mentioned fruits and vegetable are good for your health and should be included in your regular diet.
7. Make your own toothpaste
As in mouthwashes, commercial toothpastes contain unnecessary ingredients that may negatively affect your overall oral health.
You know that a mixture of baking soda and salt was used as toothpaste long before even commercial toothpastes were invented. It still works, only better than many toothpastes you see in stores. Baking soda helps prevent bad breath by neutralizing acids that aid the break down of VSCs--the culprit behind halitosis.
Ok, I hear you asking "How do I make my own toothpaste using baking soda and salt?" Well, there are only a couple of steps:
Create a mixture by mixing the baking soda and salt in 3:1 proportion.
Sprinkle this mixture on a wet toothbrush and brush your teeth as you normally do.
That's all there is to it--nothing fancy and complicated. You should see improvement in your breath in a matter of days or weeks. As a bonus, you will have whiter teeth as well as save a small fortune.
8. Switch to tea
There are many people who drink coffee instead of tea. If you're one of them, it's time to switch.
Coffee creates a thin coat in your tongue. This thin coat blocks the oxygen supply to the tongue. Hence, you make the environment perfect for anaerobic bacteria, which thrive when there is little or no oxygen. On the other hand, some research shows that tea helps prevent bad breath for some degree.
9. Chew sugarless gum
As I mentioned earlier, chewing process increases saliva flow thus making your oral environment unattractive to anaerobic bacteria. Yes, you should chew fresh parsley instead of gums, but parsley lacks the flexibility gums provide us with. It's easy to pop in a gum anywhere at any time. Note that I didn't say ANY gum.
If you have bad breath, you should not eat gums containing sugar. Sugar in most gums you eat is easily broken down into VSCs by anaerobic bacteria. For this reason, you should only use sugarless gum.
10. Find the exact cause and attack it
For a long-term benefit, you've got to find the exact cause of bad breath, and then attack the cause with a good remedy. Otherwise, you're getting nowhere. So stop blindly searching for a bad breath remedy.