So you’re going the holistic route of oral care, skipping mouthwash and using your lovely Change Toothpaste tablets. Way to go! But now you’re starting to wonder, will my breath be fresh?
A terror can set in once you move to all-natural products. It can be scary to let go of something that’s worked for you in the past.
Fresh breath is important in the eyes of modern society. We’re expected to shower daily, wear pristinely clean clothes, and have eternally minty breath when we show up to work and socialize. While it’s unfair that society expects this of us, the fact remains that having bad breath can make people slowly back away from you.
Our confidence is tied up in our oral health. With billboards selling teeth whitening strips and endless mouthwash commercials, fresh breath is a social standard.
But, while you may think that your fresh breath is thanks to all those chemicals and additives in regular toothpaste, there’s more to the story. There are many factors that determine how your breath smells, and they don’t all have to do with what’s going on inside your mouth.
Don’t worry–switching over to all-natural, eco friendly toothpaste isn’t going to make your breath suffer. If anything, giving up all those chemicals and additives will probably improve your breath!
What causes bad breath?
The main cause of bad breath is poor oral hygiene. Eating carb-heavy, sugary foods promotes plaque, and lingering plaque causes bad breath.
If you haven’t already, adopt a good oral hygiene routine. Make sure to brush your teeth at least twice daily for at least two minutes at a time, covering every surface. Floss at least once daily.
Why does my breath smell bad even after brushing?
If you have bad breath, your first instinct could be to go and swish with a generic mouthwash. Not so fast–there may be some other causes of stinky breath, and it’s best to get to the root cause.
Here are some common causes of bad breath.
- Not brushing or scraping your tongue
A lot of bacteria hangs out on your tongue, which can promote plaque in the mouth and cause bad breath. At the very least, make sure you brush your tongue after you brush your teeth. Take this to the next level by using a tongue scraper.
- Sinus infections or chronic sinus congestion
Sinus infections and post nasal drip can cause bad breath. Mucous is normally odourless, but with post nasal drip, the mucous is thicker and dryer. It runs down the back of your throat, and when you breathe, the odour exits your mouth.
While many cases of sinusitis become chronic, it’s easy to relieve the symptoms. Try nasal irrigation by flushing your sinuses with a neti pot. Not only will this remove the mucous in question, it’ll keep your sinuses hydrated.
- Dry mouth
Dry mouth, or xerostomia, can be a source of bad breath. When there’s less saliva in your mouth shooing away bad bacteria, the bacteria multiplies. We need saliva production to wash away food particles and neutralize acids in the mouth.
We experience dry mouth most mornings with the all-too-common “morning breath,” which is quickly cured by brushing our teeth. Two things are happening: leftover plaque in the mouth causes bacteria to multiply, and if we sleep with our mouths open, we get dry mouth.
To avoid dry mouth, it’s important to drink lots of water–3 to 4 litres a day.
- Acid reflux
GERD, also known as acid reflux, can cause bad breath. The esophagus pushes stomach acid up the throat, and it can make your breath stink. If you’re experiencing heartburn or an unexplained sore throat or hoarse voice, talk to your doctor about managing your condition.
Kidney disease can cause ammonia breath, when there’s a buildup of urea in your body. Diabetes can cause acetone breath, or even a fruity scent. If your breath smells like nail polish remover, that can be a sign of a high level of ketones in your body, and you should seek immediate medical attention.
Smoking causes bad breath because it dries out your mouth, encouraging more bad bacteria. In addition, the chemical compounds in the cigarette can mix with your saliva, causing bad breath.
Does mouthwash cure bad breath?
Mouthwash can certainly alleviate bad breath temporarily. The fiercely minty scent is enough to overpower the smelliest of bad breath. This effect lasts about 20 minutes.
But mouthwash isn’t really intended for bad breath; it’s intended to prevent cavities. It contains fluoride, which remineralizes enamel and prevents cavities. Bathing your teeth in fluoride can help get in all those hard-to-reach nooks and crannies.
Mouthwash can certainly improve your oral health, which can lead to better breath, but it’s not a magic fix to bad breath.
Side effects of using too much mouthwash
While many people think that they need mouthwash to kill their bad breath, a lot of people don’t know that mouthwash can actually worsen your breath.
Generic mouthwash has a drying effect, thanks to the alcohol. As we discovered earlier, when your mouth produces less saliva, it can’t flush away toxins and bacteria. As a result, bacteria thrive, causing bad breath.
In general, a lot of generic mouthwashes can be downright unhealthy.
Mouthwash ingredients to avoid
Generic mouthwash can be unhealthy. There are a lot of ingredients in it that are linked to disease. If mouthwash is a part of your routine, look for a mouthwash that’s free of the following:
- Sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS)
- Artificial dyes
- Chlorine Dioxide
- Cocamidopropyl Betaine
- Poloxamer 407
- Sodium benzoate
How often should you use mouthwash?
Mouthwash is meant to complement your oral health routine. It contains fluoride, which provides cavity protection. But you might not want to swish with mouthwash more than once a week.
How to cure bad breath naturally
To cure your bad breath naturally, start by ruling out your oral hygiene routine as a possible cause. Make sure you’re brushing your teeth for at least 2 minutes twice daily, and flossing at least once a day.
If your bad breath persists, try to get to the root cause of your bad breath. Schedule an appointment with your doctor for a check-up.
In all cases, drink lots and lots of water. This will keep food particles moving, kickstart your saliva production, and wash away bacteria. Bonus: it’ll keep you hydrated!
A breath of fresh air
Bad breath can be embarrassing and shameful. When someone tells you you have bread breath, your first instinct can be to swish with mouthwash for a quick fix. But this is just a bandage solution. Assess your overall health, and get to the root cause of your bad breath.
We’re happy you chose the all-natural, eco friendly oral care route. You’ll have fresher breath, be more conscious of what you put in your body, and save the planet by diverting single use plastics. Give yourself a pat on the back!
Get your oral hygiene routine off to a fresh start with Change Toothpaste tablets. They don’t contain any of the nasties found in generic oral care products, with no drying effects.