Planning a romantic Valentine’s Day this year with your sweetheart? Keep your breath kiss-ably fresh and your partner happy with these tips from Dr. Darian Hampton, a family and cosmetic dentist serving North Dallas, Plano, Carrollton and the surrounding areas.
Drink Plenty of Water
Water washes away foul-smelling bacteria and food particles and keeps your mouth and throat moist. Another beverage that’s good for fresh breath? Green tea, which lowers the levels of bacteria’s sulfur compounds that cause odor.
Eat the Right Foods
Enjoying crunchy, high-fiber foods like apples and raw veggies increases your mouth’s production of saliva, which fights odor-causing bacteria. Apples, specifically, help remove plaque and food particles from the teeth. Cinnamon has also been shown to kill odor-causing bacteria. Vitamin C-rich foods stop odor-causing bacteria from multiplying and neutralize odors from stinky foods like garlic and onions. Greek yogurt lowers a waste product from bacteria called hydrogen sulfide in the mouth. Chewing fresh parsley can also help your breath.
Chew (Sugarless) Gum
Gum is a great tool for stimulating saliva production and dislodging food particles stuck in between your teeth. Choose a sugar-free gum to reduce your risk of cavities.
Don’t Avoid Carbohydrates
If you’re eating an all-protein diet lacking carbohydrates, your body could go into a state of ketoses, where it burns fats for energy and produces molecules called ketones. A type of ketone called acetone is then excreted in the breath, and can be described as smelling “fruity” or “rotten.” To avoid ketoses, eat a moderate amount of healthy carbohydrates, such as whole-grain breads, rice or pasta.
Use an ADA-Accepted Mouth Rinse
Mouth rinses are multifunctional tools that not only reduce plaque on the teeth and prevent gum disease, but also keep breath fresh. Look for a mouth rinse with an ADA seal, which indicates the product has been evaluated by the American Dental Association for its safety and effectiveness. Use the mouth rinse once a day or as needed, like before the big Valentine’s date! (Please note that mouth rinse is not a substitute for brushing or flossing.)
Persistent Bad Breath? Contact Dr. Hampton
If you’ve followed all of these tips but still struggle with bad breath, there could be an underlying health issue. Contact Dr. Hampton to schedule a professional checkup by calling 972-695-4594 or sending us an email.