Freshen that smile: Natural ways to combat bad breath

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There are some great ways to keep your mouth fresh.

Suffering with bad breath can leave you feeling insecure, and worried about speaking out and laughing with your friends in public.

But there’s no reason why it should stop you living your life – and carrying an endless supply of mints isn’t the only way to mask the scent. In fact, you could stop it completely.

From lemon juice, to raw foods and even water, there are a fair few ingredients no doubt already hiding away in your kitchen that could come to the rescue, and combat the problem for good.

Bad breath affects most of us at some time or another — after a night’s sleep or after chomping on onions and garlic. Yet lingering smells need attention. Here are a few home remedies to try and get over the issue for good.

Lemon juice

Lemon rinse has been used for generations to get rid of bad breath because the acidic content in lemons prevents the growth of bacteria in your mouth. Simply stir one tablespoon of lemon juice into a cup of water and rinse your mouth with it. You can also add a bit of salt too.

Drinking more water

Dehydration is one of the most common causes of bad breath, and as we get older, we drink far too little water throughout the day as we feel less thirsty. Water helps to ward off the bacteria in the mouth and help you create saliva, your built-in remedy for eliminating those odour-causing bacteria.

Dry mouth conditions can also result in bad breath. So to counteract this, drink some water every hour, swishing it around in your mouth.

Homemade alcohol-free mouthwash

Rather than sticking to professional washes from the shelves, simply mix a cup of water with a teaspoon of baking soda. This changes the pH and fights odours, in much the same way as citrus did. Then add a few drops of antimicrobial peppermint essential oil to add to the effect.

It’s important not to swallow this, simply swill it round your mouth before spitting it out.

If you wear dentures, keep them clean

Bacteria can build up quickly in your mouth, and that’s only made worse if you wear dentures or a brace. Remove them daily and give them a good clean to ensure there’s no excess bacteria growing there, which could cause bad breath.

Raw foods

It’s worth trying to eat more carrots, celery, and apples – they are all rich in fibre and help beat bad breath. They can help clean plaque buildups and boost your saliva count.

Increase zinc intake

Another common cause of halitosis is a deficiency in zinc, which helps maintain a clean, bacteria-free mouth. You can get more zinc by eating more zinc-rich foods like pumpkin and gourd seeds, cacao, and organ meats, or taking it in supplement form.

Apple cider vinegar

Apple cider vinegar makes a great remedy for bad breath as it balances pH levels, eliminating smells. Stir one tablespoon of raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar into a glass of water and drink it before eating your meals. Otherwise, you can gargle with apple cider vinegar mixed in a cup of water for a similar effect.

Cloves or aniseeds

Cloves are rich in eugenol, which is a potent antibacterial. Simply chew on a clove and move it around your mouth until you can taste its essence, then spit it out. Meanwhile aniseeds’ antiseptic qualities can help fight halitosis-causing bacteria, and will make you feel a lot fresher.

Do you suffer with bad breath? Have you tried any of these tricks?

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