Dental Tips Blog

Sep
11

Are You Throwing Your Money Away on Mouthwash?

Posted in Bad Breath

Using a mouthwash can help you feel like you’re doing a really thorough job with your oral hygiene.

But unless you make an informed choice about your mouthwash, you may just be wasting your money on an utterly useless product.

What a Good Mouth Rinse Should Do

A mouthwash isn’t just a breath-freshener. The strong flavorings do help cover up halitosis (bad breath), but those effects are temporary. The real benefits come in when the product contains antibacterial agents that help slow down the growth of germs in the first place.

Mouth rinses labeled “antiplaque” or “antigingivitis” contain those agents that fight plaque growth. Less plaque means fresher breath and healthier gums.

Many mouthwash formulas also contain fluoride, a mineral essential for preventing tooth decay and strengthening enamel.

What’s in Your Mouthwash?

The unfortunate fact is that not all mouthwash formulas are created equal, but they’re packaged in similarly attractive bottles. At first glance, one brightly-colored bottle of liquid might not seem that different from the next.

Take a closer look at the label next time you shop for mouthwash. If you don’t see anything like:

  • Cetylpyridinium chloride
  • Essential oils (menthol and eucalyptol)
  • Fluoride

Or any other “active ingredients” listed, then that mouthwash may not do much good.

Some rinses are little more than food dye and flavoring mixed with alcohol and water. This solution leaves a tingling burn and temporary fresh scent, but it doesn’t do anything to your mouth besides dry it out.

Stop wasting your money on products that don’t benefit your teeth or gums! Talk with your local dentist or dental hygienist for advice on choosing the right mouthwash for you and your family.

Posted on behalf of:
Montevallo Family Dentistry
711 Wadsworth St
Montevallo, AL 35115
(205) 665-2224

Apr
20

Is Your Bad Breath Caused by Gum Disease?

Posted in Bad Breath

The occasional bout of bad breath can be annoying and embarrassing. But halitosis may also be a sign of a serious underlying problem.

For example, did you know that bad breath can be a sign of gum disease? Here are some indications that your foul breath might merit a trip to the dental office.

Your Gums Are Looking Puffy or Redder Than Usual

Gum disease causes inflammation in the tissues around teeth. This means that there are likely some signs of swelling or redness in the gums. Add to these symptoms a decaying odor, and you may very well have an infection in your gingiva.

The Smell Never Goes Away

Bad breath is often due to lingering food odors or plaque bacteria. If the cause of your stench is that simple, then brushing your teeth should take care of it.

Halitosis caused by gum disease, however, won’t go away no matter how much mouthwash you swish around.

People Avoid Standing Near You When You Talk

We all naturally back away when blasted with a full-force wave of halitosis. But if most people who know you find excuses to keep their heads turned away whenever you start a conversation, that means your breath has a bad reputation. Folks are prepared to avoid it!

If your bad breath doesn’t just give off the occasional funky odor but consistently sends others running away, then that could be a sign of a chronic health issue like gum disease.

Don’t leave your gum health to chance – it’s closely linked to your overall health. See a dentist or periodontist right away for a periodontal evaluation and help conquering your halitosis.

Posted on behalf of:
Pure Dental Health
2285 Peachtree Rd #203
Atlanta, GA 30309
(678) 666-3642

Apr
17

How to Get Rid of Tonsil Stones

Posted in Bad Breath

Tonsil stones, or tonsiliths, are small deposits that form in pits on tonsils and other areas in the throat. These deposits are a combination of food, bacteria, and other debris found in the mouth. They form over time and can harden or calcify if they aren’t removed.

Not everyone gets tonsil stones but if you do, then you know how challenging they can be. Tonsil stones can cause halitosis (bad breath) and a foul taste in the mouth. If you get large stones, they can be difficult to remove. Stones may even dislodge on their own and you might cough them up at inopportune times.

Here are a few methods you can try to remove these stones before they cause you trouble.

Gargle

Gargling with saltwater and/or a mouthwash on a regular basis will flush away debris from your throat and reduce bacteria.

Cotton Swabs or Toothbrush

Daring individuals with control over their gag reflex can use tools to physically scoop out tonsil stones. If you go this route, choose a tool that won’t scrape your tonsils and that you can’t accidentally choke on.

Try a Water Flosser

Water flosser shoot out a gentle stream of water through a toothbrush-like device. This tool is easy to move around and blast away stones in your tonsils.

Improve Your Oral Hygiene

A plaque-filled oral environment provides more bacteria for creating tonsil stones. You may experience fewer stones if you brush, floss, and rinse daily.

Posted on behalf of:
Pure Smiles Dentistry
2655 Dallas Highway Suite 510
Marietta, GA 30064
770.422.8776

Apr
11

4 Ways to Get Rid of Garlic Breath

Posted in Bad Breath

Garlic is healthy and a delicious ingredient in meals, but it’s also notorious for lingering on the breath. What can you do to keep the noxious odors from sabotaging your reputation? Try one (or two or three) of the following suggestions.

Brush Your Tongue

Brushing your teeth after a garlicky meal can help get rid of lingering odors, but make sure you get your tongue, too. That’s where a lot of smelly germs and debris end up. A clean tongue will reduce your chances of having bad breath.

Rinse with Minty Mouthwash

No toothbrush handy? Rinse with mouthwash. Choose one with a powerfully minty flavor to mask your garlic breath for as long as possible.

Chew an Herb or Spice

Fresh herbs and whole spices work very well at minimizing stinky breath after a meal. Parsley, cloves, and fennel are great natural breath-fresheners.

Eat Fresh Mint, Apples, or Lettuce

Did you know that garlic breath can continue long after you’ve brushed your teeth? That’s because the smelly compounds in garlic enter your bloodstream, transfer from the blood to the air in your lungs, and are released back out your mouth when you exhale.

To treat your garlic breath at the source, you need to eat a food with enzymes that help break down garlic’s odorous compounds before they can reach your lungs. Research indicates that fresh mint, apple slices, and lettuce can do the trick. Eat one of these foods immediately after your garlicky meal and you should be able to avoid having dragon breath for the rest of the day!

Consult with a dentist offering halitosis treatment if you suspect your bad breath is caused by more than just your diet.

Posted on behalf of:
Gold Hill Dentistry
2848 Pleasant Road #104
Fort Mill,  South Carolina 29708
(803) 566-8055

Jan
27

Why and How You Should Clean Your Tongue

Posted in Bad Breath

Your tongue is a very important muscle. It helps you taste, speak, chew, and swallow. But it also hides bacteria! Just like your teeth, your tongue deserves a daily cleaning.

Why Clean Your Tongue?

You may have noticed that your tongue is covered in bumps called papillae. Papillae help you sense textures and contain taste buds. They also provide the perfect hideouts for biofilm and other types of bacterial growth.

These germs give off noxious compounds that cause bad breath. Additionally, no matter how well you brush and floss, if you don’t clean your tongue, all that bacteria will come right back on your teeth within minutes after brushing.

Rinsing is not enough to clean your tongue. Antibacterial mouthwash only kills a few germs on the surface. You have to physically remove the film and food debris from off your tongue to get it really clean.

How to Clean Your Tongue?

Brushing is one method. There’s no need to be rough –  just scrub enough to loosen debris. Using a tongue scraper is another good option. A scraper is a thin flexible metal or plastic band that you pull gently over the surface of your tongue from back to front. Rinse it off after each pass.

Brush or scrape your tongue twice a day if bad breath plagues you. Stay hydrated with lots of water since dry mouth promotes bacterial growth and halitosis. Chew on sugar-free gum to stimulate a cleansing and hydrating saliva flow and to keep breath fresh.

Despite having a clean tongue, halitosis (bad breath) could indicate there’s a more serious issue such as gum disease or tooth decay. Contact your dentist for more oral hygiene tips and a dental health checkup.

Posted on behalf of:
Dr. David Kurtzman D.D.S.
611 Campbell Hill St. NW #101
Marietta, GA 30060
(770) 980-6336

Nov
12

Oral Hygiene Hacks for Better Breath

Posted in Bad Breath

Tired of halitosis and breath malodor? Don’t rely on mints or alcohol-based mouthwashes…those could make the problem worse. Here are a few other tips to try to get that halitosis under control:

Add a Few Drops of Essential Oil to Your Toothbrush 

Essential oils like peppermint can make your breath feel fresh for hours. Add just one or two drops to your toothbrush once or twice a day, then brush as normal. Or, you can add the drops to a small cup of water to rinse and gargle with it for the same effect. 

Don’t Forget to Clean Your Tongue 

Approximately 90% of bad breath bacteria originates on the tongue. Have the right tools necessary to clean your tongue and you’ll be amazed at what you see come off. While a soft toothbrush is ok to use, a tongue cleaner/scraper is even better. 

Drink Lots of Water 

Water helps to keep your mouth lubricated while washing away excess bacteria. It doesn’t “break down” the way other drinks will, and as such, it won’t add to the problem. 

Treat Your Seasonal Allergies 

Nasal congestion and drainage at the back of your throat may be what’s causing you to have halitosis. If your physician recommends an over the counter allergy medication, be sure to take it every day…even if you think you won’t have a flare up.

If you’re also suffering from signs of gum inflammation or recession, or if your gums bleed when you floss, you could have periodontal disease. Untreated, gum disease can cause significant bad breath. Talk to your dentist to find out how they can help.

Posted on behalf of:
Pure Smiles Dentistry
2655 Dallas Highway Suite 510
Marietta, GA 30064
770.422.8776

Nov
8

Cure Halitosis in 5 Simple Steps

Posted in Bad Breath

You’ll be happy to learn that there’s nothing sensational about beating bad breath. There isn’t anything bizarre or difficult about conquering offensive odors in your mouth. Halitosis treatment is based on pure common sense and tested scientific methods.

These five tips will help you identify the root cause of noxious breath in different aspects of your life.

  1. Up The Hygiene

Remove the stench rather than mask it with a rinse. Dental plaque is made up of leftover food debris and bacteria that can produce a potent stench. Check to see if your plaque-removal routine needs some adjustment.

You should be:

  • Brushing your teeth at least twice a day
  • Brushing your tongue
  • Flossing daily 
  1. Switch To Water

A dehydrated mouth easily picks up bad smells. Get plenty of water and choose good old H2O over sugary and caffeinated drinks which will make your breath worse. Alcoholic mouth rinses could be just as bad!

  1. Cut Out Unhealthy Habits

Tobacco use and excessive alcohol use will take a toll on your breath. Your body (and your friends!) will thank you if you make changes to cut out harmful habits.

  1. See Your Doctor

Surprisingly, bad breath may not actually originate in your mouth. Some underlying health problems including acid reflux, respiratory infections, and liver and kidney problems can also contribute. Plan a checkup with your doctor if you suspect there’s more to your halitosis than dental concerns.

  1. Visit Your Dentist

A dental examination could reveal areas of disease or infection in teeth and gums that may contribute to a bad taste and smell. Your dentist can treat the problem which will in turn help you get rid of bad breath.

Schedule your dental visit today!

Posted on behalf of:
Marietta Dental Professionals
550 Franklin Gateway SE
Marietta, GA 30067
(770) 514-5055

Jan
7

How Mouth Breathing Affects Your Smile

Posted in Bad Breath

There is an unfortunate stigma attached to the habit of breathing through your mouth. But rather than being a gauge of intelligence and/or a sign of a social failure, mouth breathing is an indicator that something is interfering with the way your body normally breathes.

Mouth breathing can be caused by:

  • Nasal obstruction
  • Large tonsils
  • Inflammation
  • Common cold
  • Allergies
  • Sinus infection

Even the way the lips and/or tongue are attached to the mouth can cause mouth breathing. If these are positioned uncomfortably, it can be hard for the lips to stay closed together naturally, and if the mouth is open, air will pass through.

The Effects on the Mouth

Why is mouth breathing bad? The air is filtered differently when you breath constantly through your mouth. The byproduct tends to increase the acidity of your blood and saliva. This results in your teeth swimming in a more acidic environment, putting them at risk for cavities.

But the “swimming” may not happen much, at all.

Mouth breathing also tends to dry out the oral tissues. A dry environment will make your gums uncomfortable, while increasing your risk for tooth decay and gum disease. Dry mouth also leads to halitosis (stinky breath).

What to Do

There’s often not much you can do if your body is already anatomically predisposed to mouth breathing. But, your dentist can provide you with tooth-strengthening treatments to combat increased cavity risk. A minor surgery could even correct the position of your lips or tongue. It’s also a good idea to see your doctor about any chronic sinus issues or enlarged tonsils.

Schedule a visit to your dentist today for help controlling the effects of mouth breathing.

Posted on behalf of:
Red Oak Family Dentistry
5345 W University Dr #200
McKinney, TX 75071
(469) 209-4279

Nov
27

Why is My Breath so Horrible?

Posted in Bad Breath

When you’ve tried different breath-freshening products time and again, it can be so frustrating to have persistent bad breath. The reason you still struggle is that bad breath cannot be effectively masked. It must be treated at the source -and you just might have your gums to thank for that!

What Do My Gums Have to Do with This?

Bad breath is typically the result of bacteria in the mouth creating an odor. The more you let bacteria grow, the stinkier your breath gets. So poor oral hygiene is a common cause of bad breath.

But it can get worse.

Plaque bacteria that is not flossed and brushed away will eventually cause gums to get inflamed and break down. This is called periodontitis, a serious form of gum disease. Periodontitis is what happens when your gums become infected because of bacteria. This process can create some very strong and unique smells.

Fight Back!

It’s never too late to improve your oral hygiene routine. In fact, by making some adjustments to your routine, you can prevent gum disease from affecting you in the first place. However, you can’t do this alone. You need to have your gums assessed for signs of disease. This is where the dental expert comes in. A professional dental cleaning will give you a clean slate to work with.

Fresh Breath: A Sign of Health

Don’t forget to schedule a tooth and gum consultation with your local dentist. The sooner you take action, the quicker you can get a handle on your breath concerns.

So stop trying to mask the problem. Face it down with a little help and start enjoying a new take on life!

Posted on behalf of:
Seven Hills Dentistry
1305 Cedarcrest Rd. #115
Dallas, GA 30132
(678) 257-7177

Aug
1

5 Causes of Bad Breath

Posted in Bad Breath

We all have those bad days where we need a mint or piece of gum to cover up dragon breath!

But the best way to treat halitosis (bad breath) is to attack the source. Investigating these possibilities could help you make your breath a whole lot sweeter!

Stomach Problems

Gastric issues such as acid reflux can create an acidic and smelly environment in the mouth. You might be aware that your bouts of bad breath may simply be the side effect of a condition you are dealing with. Conversely, your bad breath could be an indication that you should see your doctor for a checkup.

Congestion and Sinus Issues

Even a common cold can give you bad breath. When your nose is blocked up, you tend to breathe through your mouth more. Mouth breathing dries out your mouth and encourages bad breath. A nasty upper respiratory infection in itself can also affect the quality of the air you breathe out.

Smelly Foods

Foods like onions, garlic, coffee, and tuna have a serious reputation for lingering on the breath! These potent foods stay in your system for quite some time after you’ve eaten.

Poor Oral Hygiene

If you don’t brush and floss as recommended, the buildup of plaque bacteria will start to stink! Oral diseases like gum disease and tooth decay also have unique and pungent odors. Ask your dental hygienist or dentist for suggestions on improving your oral hygiene routine.

Dry Mouth

Some health conditions, cancer treatments, and medications are known to cause dry mouth. A dry environment is ideal for hosting all sorts of smelly germs. Talk with your dentist about saliva substitutes to keep your mouth fresh and comfortable.

Talking about bad breath doesn’t have to be embarrassing. Ask your dentist for help!

Posted on behalf of:
Sugar Creek Family Dental
1165 Gravois Rd. Suite 140
Fenton, MO 63026
(636) 255-8325

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