Bad breath can make you feel self-conscious and can make social interactions awkward. While bad breath, or halitosis, is sometimes caused by a dental or medical problem, the most common causes are many of the foods we eat.
Some foods are well known to contribute to bad breath. These are the most common sources of odor. You don’t need to give them up, but you should carry a toothbrush and toothpaste so you can brush after meals to keep your breath fresh.
Foods That Can Cause Bad Breath
Garlic is one of the most frequent causes of bad breath. In addition to leaving an odor in your mouth, including on your tongue, garlic is absorbed into the bloodstream. The odor travels to the lungs and can be exhaled through the mouth. Garlic can also emit a smell through pores in the skin. If you like foods with garlic, you don’t need to give them up, but don’t overdo it. You should brush and floss your teeth as soon as possible after the meal.
Onions also have a smell that lingers after they are eaten. They contain sulfuric compounds that are absorbed into the bloodstream and can return in the form of bad breath. After you eat onions, you can eliminate the odor by brushing, flossing, and rinsing with mouthwash.
Many people enjoy a tuna fish sandwich for lunch, but it can leave a lingering odor. As seafood oxidizes in a metal can, it starts to take on a sour smell that can contribute to halitosis.
Horseradish, which is used to flavor cocktail sauces and dressings, contains a chemical compound called isothiocynate. This compound gives it a distinctive flavor, but it can also cause bad breath.
Milk, cheese, and other dairy products are healthy and important sources of calcium. However, many people do not realize that they can also contribute to bad breath. Dairy products contain amino acids. The bacteria in the mouth feed on the amino acids, which leads to bad breath.
How to Prevent Bad Breath
If you enjoy these foods, you don’t need to give them up because you are worried about having unpleasant breath after eating them. Just take a toothbrush and toothpaste with you and brush as soon as possible after eating. Good oral hygiene can help you enjoy your favorite foods and keep your breath fresh.
If brushing and flossing don’t help with your bad breath, there could be another cause, such as plaque or gum disease. You should visit your dentist for an exam and cleaning. Your dentist can remove plaque from your teeth and look for signs of gum disease or other problems. If you are overdue for a dental exam or cleaning, make an appointment with Fried Dentistry today.