Prevent halitosis with good oral hygiene and these natural remedies
01/10/2023 // Olivia Cook // Views

Bad breath is the main symptom of halitosis. Addressing the cause of bad breath is normally the first step toward treating this preventable condition.

Good oral hygiene and some natural remedies can help in that regard.

Good oral hygiene

Keeping your teeth healthy good oral hygiene can help reduce the need for extensive and costly dental intervention in the future. (Related: Curing bad breath in 5 easy steps to halt halitosis forever.)

Dentists generally recommend flossing your teeth before brushing them to loosen plaque that collects around and between your teeth and get rid of hidden food particles that may be stuck between your teeth and debris from areas that a toothbrush can't reach.

Flossing is a way to stimulate the gums, reduce plaque below the gum line, reduce the risk of cavities, soreness, puffiness and unsightly redness of the gums and help lower the risk of gingivitis, which can progress to periodontitis.

Brush your teeth properly twice a day for at least two minutes. Brush the outer, inner and chewing surfaces of your teeth – moving your toothbrush gently back and forth in soft strokes or in a circular motion to remove plaque. Brush gently along the gum line to get rid of any trapped plaque or food debris. To clean the inside surfaces of your front teeth, tilt your toothbrush vertically and make several up-and-down strokes.

Don't neglect to clean your tongue before rinsing your mouth out and brushing your teeth to get rid of the biofilm, dead cells, bacteria and food debris.

Cleaning your tongue with a soft-bristled toothbrush or a flexible tongue scraper protects your taste buds, eliminates bad breath, reduces the likelihood of periodontal disease and reduces the likelihood of a black tongue.


Black tongue is a condition that occurs if your tongue is left uncleaned for a long time. It is caused by an overgrowth of dead skin cells, causing lengthening of the papillae (the little bumps on the top of your tongue that contain your taste buds and help grip food while your teeth are chewing) and staining from bacteria, yeast, food, tobacco or other substances in the mouth.

If you wear dentures, remove and clean them properly to get rid of odor-causing bacterial buildup from food and drink before you go to bed at night.

Natural remedies

A study published in the International Journal of Dental Hygiene has shown that drinking water or rinsing the mouth with a glass of water helps remove up to 60 percent of substances that contribute to bad breath.

Make sure you are adequately hydrated because water will naturally wash away food particles and any debris left behind, leaving nothing for the bacteria to eat. It also dilutes the acid in your mouth that can destroy your tooth enamel.

A condition called dry mouth or xerostomia contributes to bad breath. Drinking plenty of water creates more saliva, which helps cleanse your mouth by removing particles that cause bad odors.

Eat more raw, crunchy and fiber-rich fruits and vegetables like apples, carrots, celery and kale because the abrasive power of fiber in them acts like a toothbrush and is great at keeping your mouth clean. Chewing them can also help your mouth produce more saliva.

Pamper the good bacteria in your gut by adding probiotics and fermented foods to your diet regimen. Scientists have found that pampering the good bacteria enables them to flourish so they can fight off the bad bacteria causing bad breath. The best way to do that is to consume more probiotic-rich foods like yogurt, kefir, kombucha tea and fermented sauerkraut or kimchi.

Aniseeds, cloves and fennel seeds can also help freshen your breath naturally, thanks to their therapeutic antiseptic properties that help fight halitosis-causing bacteria.

Cinnamon is another spice that has powerful antibacterial properties that kill off odor-causing bacteria. Plus, the refreshing and fragrant aroma of cinnamon masks the smell of bad breath. Chew cinnamon stick or stir it into your tea. Alternatively, you can boil one teaspoon of cinnamon powder in a cup of water. You may add some bay leaves and cardamom. Strain the solution and use it as a mouthwash.

You can also chew a piece of thoroughly washed lemon or orange rind for a mouth-freshening burst of flavor. Their citric acid can prevent the growth of odor-causing bacteria and stimulate your salivary glands to prevent dry mouth issues. If you don't like the idea of chewing their rind, use their juice to make a mouth rinse

You can stir one tablespoon of lemon or orange juice into a cup of water and rinse your mouth with it. The strong, pleasant smell of these citrus fruits can help mask the bad odor.

The chlorophyll in basil, cilantro, mint, rosemary and parsley also neutralizes odors. If you don't like to chew or eat them raw, make tea by adding their leaves to hot water and allowing them to steep for a few minutes. (Related: Got bad breath? Try chlorophyll for halitosis.)

If your bad breath continues despite your best efforts, consult with a natural health practitioner to get the best treatment available.

Learn more about natural remedies for bad breath at

Watch this video to learn how to get rid of bad breath fast.

This video is from the Quick Treatment, Fast Result channel on

More related stories:

Stop halitosis in its tracks with these 8 natural remedies for bad breath.

Saponin derived from quinoa shows anti-bacterial effects against halitosis-related bacteria.

Reverse halitosis: Natural remedies for bad breath.

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