Ah, fresh breath – we all want it. But with as much as we tend to enjoy our coffee, garlic and tuna fish (not together we hope!), keeping our breath fresh day in and day out can sometimes be a challenge. But, fear not intrepid oral health champion! There are some things you can do to freshen up in between meals, and every day for that matter. From munching on vegetables, to knowing how to floss properly, we’ve got you covered. So you can feel great at every holiday party you attend this December!
Go for the green:You may have heard that munching on foods with a healthy dose of chlorophyll (like parsley) is a great way to reduce bad breath. Well, not exactly. The idea such herbs counteract bad breath is outdated and incorrect say researchers. That said, eating green leafy vegetables, or any water-rich veggie or fruit is a great way to keep your breath in check because the water in these foods help with saliva production … something that does help keep your breath smelling clean.
Brush or scrape the tongue:Your tongue is a wonderful collector of gunk. So, to keep your breath smelling fresh all day, you’ve got to keep it clean. Your dentist may have a favorite tongue scraper, so ask if they’ve got a recommendation. You can, of course, just brush your tongue as well – just be sure to aim for the back of your tongue where most of the baddies tend to linger. Worried you’ll gag? Here’s a tip for those of you with a sensitive gag reflex: keep your mouth nearly closed while brushing your tongue – doing so tends to engage our swallow-reflex instead of our gag reflex.
Carry the right tools: Keep a tooth brush, toothpaste, and floss on hand for when you have a delicious but garlicky meal. If you’re feeling ambitious, why not keep the aforementioned tongue scraper on hand as well.
Water is your friend: We have a theory. People had better breath when water fountains were ubiquitous. The constant availability of water was a great thing. Remember asking to leave the classroom just to get a drink of water? Unfortunately, many of us haven’t even seen a water fountain since grade school. So, pack your own bottle. Use the sink, and fill up. Sure, you can purchase bottled water, but why waste all that plastic. Single use is the way to go, and there are enough varieties to choose from today, that even the most design-centric among us can find an option. Drink more water! Good for you, and good for your breath!
Don’t smoke: Yes. Don’t smoke. Not good for you in any way whatsoever.
National 12-hour Fresh Breath Day 2015 is December 12. So, brush that tongue, stock up on water, and remain eminently kissable all month, and all year long.