Although waking up with morning breath isn’t a great way to start the day, it’s part of being human. An expert in general dentistry in Franklin, NC, says that bacteria in the crevices of your tongue, gums, and inside your mouth’s nooks and crannies cause otherwise mornings to taste like this. As these natural microorganisms live, feast, reproduce, and die while you sleep, they release sulfur compounds and other byproducts that give off a less-than-rosy odor.
The good news is that morning breath or morning halitosis is highly treatable. We’ve pulled together some tips that give you a fighting chance of waking up without the morning breath stink.
Besides eliminating food particles stuck between teeth, good oral hygiene practices reduce plaque, a sticky buildup that collects morning breath-causing bacteria. Dental health experts recommend brushing teeth at least twice daily, flossing once daily, and rinsing with mouthwash. They also suggest using a specialized tongue scraper to clean your tongue, especially the back where colonies of harmful bacteria build up.
Staying hydrated helps prevent morning breath because fluid intake flushes your system, triggers increased saliva production and reduces oral bacteria. However, if you think that drinking plenty of flavored beverages such as coffee, tea, juice, soda, or alcohol can give you this desired effect, think again. Only water can help keep your mouth as fresh as a daisy.
Did you know that gustatory (taste) and mechanical (chewing) stimuli increase salivary flow? Since saliva helps prevent morning breath, it’s best to adopt habits that trigger your body to produce more saliva. Eating breakfast, sucking on sugar-free candies, and chewing sugar-free gum or crunchy fruits and vegetables such as apples and carrots can help get the juices flowing. Dentists may also recommend artificial saliva stimulating agents to combat an especially dry mouth associated with a condition called xerostomia.
Oral probiotics such as Lactobacilli are usually delivered via chewable tables that are meant to sit in the mouth until they dissolve. Oral probiotics have beneficial bacterial strains that help prevent gingivitis, reduce plaque buildup and fight candida overgrowth.
Several recent studies show that probiotics promote fresh breath better than an antibacterial mouthwash. As these strains crowd out the spaces where harmful bad breath-causing bacteria live, they change the mouth microbiome and improve oral health.
Besides causing cancer, damaging your gums, and staining your teeth, smoking or chewing tobacco products gives you bad breath. Although over-the-counter nicotine patches can help tame the urge, an appointment with a dental professional to discuss prescription medications or quit-smoking programs can help you kick the tobacco habit for good.
During a dental visit, your dentist will examine your teeth, gums, and tongue as a routine checkup. They may also take x-rays to get a better idea of what’s going on inside your mouth. In addition, they’ll provide a cleaning using various tools that can remove plaque or tartar in ways a toothbrush and flossing can’t. They can also help you pinpoint what exactly is causing your bad breath and how you can fix it.
At Cataloochee Dental Group, we’re committed to providing top-quality dental care to help you achieve a healthy and beautiful smile. Contact us today to schedule your consultation.