Insecurities… most people thought they’d magically disappear after you left high school, I know I did. But, somewhere between your first job and getting wrinkles, those sneaky insecurities didn’t evaporate. At Sugar Fix Dental Loft, my cosmetic dental office in Chicago, I have patients of all ages and backgrounds. The one thing they have in common is that they want the best smile possible. And, just like all of us type A’s, they’re incredibly hard on themselves. Beyond the obvious requests for Invisalign and Veneers, there is one insecurity that pops up weekly: bad breath.
There can be several causes for less than desirable breath. And luckily there are simply remedies that I recommend to our professionals that are on the go- and may not have time for a full brush and floss session before every meeting.
Plaque Build Up
If it’s been too long since a professional cleaning was done, plaque can build up on the teeth and calcify there. These calcified areas are rough and attract more plaque so it starts a snowball effect. The plaque is made up of bacteria, and this bacteria is stinky! So if it’s been a while, a professional cleaning to scrape and clear off the bacteria can totally clear up the odor!
Debris on the Tongue
Our tongues are excellent at trapping food particles and debris to help us taste all the delicious meals… but that also means the particles they trap can build up and become smelly. Using a tongue scraper can get rid of excess food, debris, and dead skin cells that build up and provide immediate improvement in bad breath. Since this debris can build up after every meal, the best results are seen when it’s used twice a day. I ask my patients to incorporate it into their brushing routines after breakfast and dinner.
Foods that Linger
We love a scent that lingers when it comes to perfume and cologne… not so much when it comes to food.
Garlic might make for a tasty addition to your meal, but the scent does tend to stick around. Over the years, I’ve built a little emergency kit for times like this. At work, I keep a travel toothbrush, toothpaste, coco floss and a mini bottle of listerine. This kit is amazing and completely gets the job done, but for fresh breath on-the-go I needed something more streamlined. That’s how I found disposable teeth wipes and listerine pocket tabs. The teeth wipes are a fabric sleeve that fits right over your finger so you can scrub your teeth with it. They are flat and can fit even into a mens wallet, and they leave you with a light minty scent feeling refreshed. For a little extra oomph, I use listerine pocket tabs. They’re intensely minty, and conceal whatever food you might have indulged in. I prefer this to gum as they dissolve right on your tongue and you won’t need to be chewing on anything at the table.
Bad breath can be banished for good when you’re on top of these three things. No need to hide behind your hand when you speak. Time to be totally confident and beat this little insecurity for good!