Don’t we all love that cup of coffee in the morning? Waking up to a daily dose of Java and other a.m. habits can lead to some horrendous halitosis. Bad breath may be caused by poor sleeping habits, eating certain foods or poor dental hygiene. Fresh morning breath can be achieved by giving these simple tips a try:
Cut down alcohol and coffee consumption
The caffeine in coffee slows down saliva production, drying out your mouth. This can lead to bad breath. Coffee (or any beverage that contains caffeine) creates a drying effect in your mouth. The same goes for alcohol. Reduced saliva creates the perfect setting for fragrant bacteria to flourish and multiply. Also, the actual smells introduced to your mouth by coffee or alcohol can cause unpleasant odors. You can swap breakfast coffee with a refreshing smoothie or citrus-infused water. You can also combat the effects of caffeinated beverages by alternating with glasses of water.
People who smoke are more likely to suffer from oral odors or a “smoker’s breath.” Cigarettes cause bad breath by leaving smoke particles in the throat and lungs. This creates the stale scent associated with cigarettes. The chemical additives found in tobacco can remain in your mouth for hours, leading to a host of secondary causes of bad breath. Tobacco also causes chronic halitosis by drying out palates. Smoking repeatedly leaves a dry, chemical-filmed environment where the oral anaerobic bacteria can flourish. You can fight the urge to smoke by distracting yourself with light chores, daily walks or jogging.
Don’t skip breakfast
That nutritious meal after a good night’s sleep is very important. It boosts saliva production in your mouth and neutralizes that morning odor. Food in the morning scrubs your tongue, stimulates saliva production, and washes away the bacteria that causes bad breath. However, not all foods neutralize odor. Obviously, don’t eat a big onion right before you run out the door in the morning– grab an apple, eggs or yogurt! They promote saliva production while providing nutrients your body needs.
Practice better dental hygiene
Your morning dental routine is an important way to start your day. Brushing and flossing removes food particles left in your mouth from a previous meal. Stuck food particles lead to bad breath if they remain unchecked. Brush your tongue, because just like your teeth, the tongue is a breeding ground for bacteria that cause bad breath. Failing to brush your tongue leads to a multiplication of bacteria throughout the day and night.
Your regular toothbrush is more than capable of getting the job done. Avoid brushing too vigorously as it could damage your taste buds.
Check (and change) sleeping habits
In most cases, bad breath is noticeable in the morning even if you brushed your teeth before going to bed the previous night. Halitosis can be caused by certain breathing habits while sleeping. For example, breathing with your mouth open while asleep causes dryness and encourages bacteria to settle. Try breathing through your nose before you sleep. This prevents air from entering the mouth, giving the saliva left on your tongue and gums a chance of moving the bacteria away.
Drinking a glass of water before bed or using a humidifier can help keep your mouth moist.
Visit a dentist
In cases where bad breath persists despite your best efforts, visit a dentist for a proper diagnosis. Persistent bad breath may signal something more serious like tooth infections, diabetes or even kidney failure.
With a personalized treatment plan, Dr. Barrios and our team can help you begin to free yourself of the problem for good. We offer comprehensive dental services for you and your family. Call us today at 519.767.6453 to request an appointment.