Fresh breath after meals (2)
Alcoholic beverages have their own characteristic smell which they leave in the mouth. In addition, they contain sugar as well.
Alcohol also dries out the mouth leading to bad smell.
For reasons such as weight loss, some people go on very low carbohydrates. That is, they eat very little starchy foods. Some even eat more protein.
In this case, there will be no glucose available readily for production of energy. This forces the body to use fats and proteins for energy. As a result, certain chemicals known as ketones are produced.
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They find their way into the breath; they smell foul.
The solution to this is the consumption of well balanced meals even if one wants to lose weight. Talk to your dietician for proper guidance.
When fasting, especially for long periods, the empty alimentary canal may give way for the movement of gases from the rectum upwards through the large intestines, small intestines, stomach, oesophagus and then through the mouth.
These are bad smelling gases and will give off bad smell. This will stop if you eat after ending your fast.
People who suffer from gastro esophageal reflux disease (GERD) or acid reflux, also referred to as heartburns tend to produce bad mouth odour as well.
This is because some gaseous, liquid and solid contents of the stomach find their way into the throat or mouth sometimes.
These substances do smell very bad. These medical conditions must be managed well to bring an end to the bad mouth odour.
One simple thing that can help minimise acid reflux is by reducing the amount of food that enters the stomach at each meal.
You may divide your meal into two and eat at say an hour interval.
Also, do not be drinking water while eating, wait a while after meals before you drink water. This is just to control the content of the stomach.
The same way people suffering from diabetes, liver disease and other medical conditions can have bad mouth odour as a result.
The solution is listening to your doctor’s advice for treatment and management of those conditions.
Sinus problems can lead to bad mouth odour as well. See your ENT specialist for treatment and your breadth will become fresh again.
Good oral hygiene is key to health and wellness. The dentist is able to diagnose certain diseases by examining how the mouth smells among other things. So visit the dentist regularly.
Right from infancy the mouth needs to be kept clean especially after eating and taking drinks. Parents suffer a great deal trying to clean the mouth of their infants but they must still do their best.
Also train them to eat fresh fruits instead of them drinking fruit juice, soft drinks and sugar sweetened beverages all the time. Minimize their intake of toffees and sweets as well.
Adults should also maintain the good habit of brushing their teeth twice a day at least. Most people brush their teeth first thing after they wake up in the morning after which they eat.
The food particles then stay in their mouth for the rest of the day. So though they brush their teeth, they still suffer bad mouth odour.
The best approach should have been brushing even after breakfast and lunch as well. Even if you cannot brush again, try and wash your mouth with enough water after all meals.
Swish the water round the mouth adequately before spitting it out.
Seriously I think it is better for our oral hygiene if we develop the habit of brushing in the morning after breakfast.
We can wash the mouth with just water after waking up from bed and then brush after breakfast.
This will help remove food particles and keep the breadth fresh.
Make sure you brush last thing at night before going to bed. When brushing the teeth, pay attention to the whole of the mouth. It will be better we even say “brush your mouth”, not only the teeth.
Pay attention to the tongue too.
I learnt from the dentists that the back of the toothbrush has been designed for scrapping the tongue. Make use of it.
The writer is a dietician at the Trust Hospital and author of "Eating to prevent and manage lifestyle diseases" and “Answers for your diet”. For copies call or WhatsApp 0244090262,