What are the causes of bad breath?
The most common reasons for bad breath are caused by tobacco, alcohol, or food. Another common medical reason is most often due to an issue involving your teeth or gums. Dry mouth may also be a reason you may be experiencing bad breath, as it causes issues with your teeth and with eating. Lastly, nose or throat problems and certain diseases can cause unpleasant breath. If you feel any of these reasons may be why you may be struggling with bad breath, please contact a medical professional.
How do I stop bad breath?
You can make a lifestyle change, which can involve:
- Limiting or stopping your use of tobacco, alcoholic and/or caffeinated beverages
- Trying to consume snacks that require lots of chewing, i.e. raw celery or carrots. The act of chewing causes your mouth to salivate and keep your breath refreshed.
- Throughout the day, drink more fluids
- Refraining from long periods of hunger and eat regular meals, including breakfast
- Chewing sugarless gum is great, as it will cause saliva to flow
- Avoiding substances such as spicy foods, garlic, and onion which often have strong distinctive scents and can cause bad breath
Taking care of your oral hygiene:
- Your teeth and gums are important to pleasant breath. Using a soft toothbrush, you should be brushing your teeth at least twice a day, while flossing at least once a day. Make sure to replace your brush at least every 3 months.
- Use your toothbrush to remove the bacteria in your mouth by gently brushing your tongue. Contact your dental specialist to make sure you are using the best tongue cleaning technique.
- At least once a year (or every 6 months if possible), visit the dentist or
- Dental hygienist
- Keep your braces or appliances clean. Contact your dentist for the best practices on how to keep them hygienic.
- Although mouthwashes are unlikely to give long-lasting relief, try using mouthwash at bedtime. For longer relief, swish in your mouth for 30 seconds, then gargle for another 30 seconds and spit. For at least 30 minutes, avoid drinking or eating.
- Mouthwashes containing alcohol or antibacterial agents should be avoided. Mouthwash with alcohol in its ingredients can make bad breath worse and dry out the mouth, while antibacterial agents can cause excess growth of bacteria that cause bad breath.
- Remove loose food debris by rinsing dentures after you eat
- Use lukewarm water to brush your dentures. By using a toothbrush while using soap or denture paste, you can remove plaque and food debris to help prevent stains.
What is Athlete’s foot?
Athlete’s foot is caused by a fungus infection on the skin of the feet. While the name can be misleading, anyone can be affected by athlete’s foot, not just athletes.
How do I know if I have Athlete’s foot?
Soles of the feet may start to become red and itchy. As well, the skin between the toes may start to become scaly or peeling.
How do you treat Athlete’s foot?
Treating athlete’s foot starts with killing the fungus that started it. Different types of creams, ointments, gels, lotions, powders, and sprays will help treat athlete’s foot. Ask a pharmacist for more information on which product is best for you. Most products can be bought without a prescription.
If nonprescription products do not seem to be working, you may have to take medication that is taken via the mouth to treat the infection. Please see a doctor if you are unable to see improved results within 2 weeks of starting your prescription or your symptoms are not gone by 6 weeks.
Practices to incorporate into your routine to help get rid of athlete’s foot:
- Use lukewarm water and soap with no deodorant to wash your feet daily.
- Soak your feet for a maximum of 10 minutes.
- Carefully dry your feet and take special care between the toes. Use a clean, soft towel every time you wash your feet to lower irritation.
- Make sure you are replacing socks and shoes every day.
- Socks made out of acrylic, cotton, woold, or polypropylene are great to use due to their absorbent and synthetic blends
- Shoes made out of leather or canvas should be worn due to the ventilation they provide and their ability to help your feet stay dry.
- Avoid going barefoot in places where athlete’s foot could spread. Always wear sandals at the pool or public shower areas.