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Tips to Beat Bad Breath

Onion breath lingering long after dinner? Bad breath -- the medical term is halitosis -- is caused by more than pungent food.

Mayo Clinic Women's HealthSource helps to deal with bad breath causes and cures. Causes of bad breath include:

Dental problems: Poor dental hygiene leads to an accumulation of bacterial plaque on teeth or inflammation of gums. This bacteria contributes to bad breath.

Dry mouth: Insufficient saliva allows dead cells to accumulate in your mouth. The cells decompose and cause bad breath.

Food: The oils from garlic and onions are absorbed into your bloodstream and transferred to your lungs, where they're expelled when you breathe out.

So how do you get rid of bad breath?
Practice good dental care to fight bad breath. Brush your teeth and your tongue - where bad breath-causing bacteria reside.
Floss daily. See your dentist regularly to get professional teeth cleaning. Scraping your tongue also helps to get rid of bad breath.
Drink water for moist mouth. Chew gum or suck on candy. Sugarless is best for your teeth and breath.
Drink tea. A substance in tea may prevent the growth of bacteria that causes bad breath.

If you have dentures, clean them at least once a day or as directed by your dentist.

If nothing works, talk to your dentist or doctor. Halitosis, or bad breath, can be caused by other conditions including postnasal drip, infections, hepatitis, gastric ulcer or uncontrolled diabetes.