Dealing with bad breath

Is there anything worse than bad breath? We've all been there, casually cupping our hands over our mouths and breathing into them, trying to see if we have bad breath or not, or we avoid eating garlic like the plague if we know we have a meeting after lunch. So here are a few tips for making sure your breath is as fresh as it can be.

Watch what you eat

Certain foods are more potent than others, and while garlic has a reputation for causing bad breath, it isn't the only culprit. Onions, seafood (especially tuna), dairy, coffee, and alcohol… these can all cause acid in the stomach and bacteria in the mouth, causing bad breath.

Pack a travel toothbrush

If you're afraid of having bad breath for an after-work date, pack a toothbrush and toothpaste and brush before your rendezvous. Almost every drugstore sells travel-sized mouthwash, toothpaste and toothbrushes that you can keep in your desk at work, or in your handbag or briefcase.

Drink more water

You will never hear health experts stop banging on about drinking more water. It's because we don't drink nearly enough. Water is essential for keeping our mouths clean, for saliva production, for hydrating our skin so that it glows and keeping our organs healthy. Drinking water washes away food debris, preventing build-up of bacteria in our mouths. How much water should we be drinking? 48 ounces a day (about 3 pints worth).

Snack on crunchy fruits and veg like apples

If you do need a snack between meals, go for something fresh and crunchy: apples, celery, carrots or cucumber sticks. They help remove food caught between teeth and help rub away bacteria from your teeth. Hard and crunchy foods especially are great for removing that fuzzy feeling on your teeth.

Go green instead of caffeine

Green juices are the way to go in the mornings if you want to fight bad breath. Grab a green smoothie, or a fresh-pressed juice that is packed with kale, kiwi, spinach, ginger, etc. instead of your usual flat white. Green juice is low in acid, while coffee is highly acidic, which can lead to bad breath.

If you have persistent bad breath, it could be a sign of gum disease or another underlying health problem, so make sure you check in with your dentist or GP to get a professional opinion.