Most people are struggling to get on with their lives because of the Coronavirus pandemic. But do you know there’s a struggle within that struggle? They call it mask mouth. If you haven’t heard about this yet, you might have smelled it already if you started wearing a mask.
Yes, we’re talking about our breath. And yes, mask mouth is a real thing. It’s always been there. Only now, we are more aware of it because of the mask. It’s called bad breath.
We have all come across someone with bad breath. Some don’t know they have it. Others deny it. Now, they can’t. People think they do not have bad breath because of their strict oral home care – like brushing their teeth twice or thrice a day, flossing, and even tossing in the occasional mouthwash. However, dental professionals say this isn’t enough. So what can we do to control it?
How to Prevent Mask Mouth
1. Watch What You Eat and Drink
If you’re so into foods with a lot of garlic, onions, and spices, minimizing on such can help reduce bad breath, along with brushing and using mouthwash right after eating.
Coffee has a high concentration of smelly sulfur, alcohol triggers acid reflux. Tea and carbonated drinks dry up the mouth and cause bacteria to thrive. These are surefire ways to have bad breath.
RELATED: How Can I Get Rid of Dry Mouth?
2. Chew Sugar-free Gum with Xylitol
Chewing gum encourages saliva production, which helps get rid of bacteria and prevent it from sticking to the tongue. It also picks up the remaining food particles in your mouth.
Next, Xylitol is antibacterial. And since it’s an artificial sweetener, it doesn’t cause cavities.
Just a side note for dog lovers, Xylitol can lead to low blood sugar, seizures, and liver failure in dogs, and in the worst case, kill your dog. So make sure to dispose of your gum properly.
3. Rinse With Extra Virgin Coconut Oil
Rinsing with a tablespoon of extra virgin coconut oil for 15 – 20 minutes can do wonders. The oil is high in lauric acid, which has antimicrobial properties. It sweeps away and dissolves bacteria in your mouth.
4. Quit Smoking
We all know this already, don’t we? The chemical toxins found in cigarettes are substantial contributory factors to bad breath. Also, smoking dries up the mouth and reduces the production of your saliva.
5. Clean Dental Appliances Regularly
Food particles can get lodged in dental appliances like braces, fixed bridges, dentures, and retainers. They are practically food particle magnets. So make sure to clean them every day to minimize bacterial growth.
6. Brush Your Tongue
Brushing or scraping your tongue can help reduce bacteria in your mouth. Make sure you include cleaning your tongue at least twice a day. One in the morning and do it again before bedtime.
Some medications reduce saliva production. And we already know at this point that a dry mouth can lead to more bacteria. You can’t do much about this, so brushing your teeth and tongue is the next best thing. Make sure to use a toothpaste formulated for dry mouth and drink plenty of water.
Check also if you have swollen, bleeding, and painful gums. The cause for that is the buildup of plaque (bacteria) along the gumline. Which, in turn, can cause bad breath.
Visit Your Dentist
If you have a cavity, it’s best to have it taken care of as soon as you can since food particles can get into that cavity and cause bad breath. Not to mention the agonizing pain you’ll be going through if you don’t.
Nothing beats letting the professionals do what they do best. And that’s taking care of your mouth. If you can, make an appointment with your dentist for a professional cleaning. Bacteria under the gums in the hard to reach areas, and in between the teeth, can’t be removed by any of the rituals you do at home.
A gentle reminder before heading out and seeing your dentist, wear the proper personal protective equipment to protect yourself from spending the coronavirus.
Do you think mask mouth is a real thing? Let us know why in the comments section below.