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Bad Breath Is No Match For These 11 Easy Fixes

collage of various Natural Remedies For Bad Breath

Send Halitosis Packing With These Easy Remedies

Since most studies on the matter rely on self-reporting, it’s hard to know exactly how many people suffer from chronic halitosis—also known as bad breath. It’s understandable why people might be hesitant to report that particular fact about themselves, but at the very least, I think it’s safe to say that halitosis is a common problem that affects many people.

But even if you don’t experience it chronically, you can still experience an occasional episode of bad breath. Yes, even those who are diligent about their oral hygiene routine and maintain a healthy diet can have funky breath every once in a while. (Life is unfair that way!)

But the good news is that I’m here to help—as much as any one blogger can, anyway—because today I’ll be sharing 11 simple and natural remedies for bad breath. Whether your bad breath episodes are chronic or occasional, these remedies can help you address the root causes of halitosis and banish bad breath.

11 Natural Remedies For Bad Breath

woman putting a mint leaf into a mouth

1. Chew On Fresh Herbs

You can chew on fresh herbs to freshen your breath, such as a fresh sprig of parsley, basil, mint, rosemary, thyme, or cilantro. Many believe that chewing on herbs for a few minutes activates the chlorophyll the herbs and helps neutralize unpleasant odors. (Regardless of how it actually works, replacing bad breath with a fresh, herbaceous scent certainly won’t hurt!) :-)

dumping zinc pills into a hand

2. Rinse With Zinc

A zinc rinse may be just what the doctor ordered to keep bad breath at bay. According to a 2017 study, participants who regularly rinsed with a solution containing zinc saw more dramatic improvements in halitosis than those who used a placebo rinse. You can find mouth rinses with zinc on Amazon and elsewhere, or a zinc supplement may help too.

Related: The Best Way To Get Whiter Teeth At Home On The Cheap

Probiotics sitting on a table

3. Supplement With Probiotics

While bad breath can start in the mouth, in some cases it may begin as far down as the digestive tract. In these cases, improving gut health with probiotics may go a long way towards improving bad breath. Eat more probiotic-rich foods like live culture yogurt, kimchee, sauerkraut, and other fermented foods. Or you can opt for a simple probiotic supplement if you prefer!

apple cider vinegar sitting on a table

4. Drink Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar has the advantage of fighting two potential causes of bad breath. Firstly, drinking it helps with digestion, which, as I mentioned above, can treat bad breath in some cases. And secondly, apple cider vinegar has natural antibacterial properties, which help kill odor-causing bacteria that may be lurking in your mouth and teeth.

To use it, add 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar to a glass of water. Drink this before each meal, or gargle with it for 10 seconds following your meal.

bottled water in a fridge

5. Stay Hydrated

If you aren’t drinking enough water during the day, your mouth is likely drier than it should be, and a dry mouth is an ideal breeding ground for odor-causing bacteria. Drink water regularly, and consider adding slices of orange, strawberries, or kiwi to give it a boost of vitamin C. Water and vitamin C together will make your mouth a very unpleasant place for bacteria to live, which means bye-bye bad breath!

woman putting a creamy sauce onto a plate of food

6. Don’t Skip Meals

Fasting—or just plain forgetting to eat—can cause your mouth to dry out, which as I just mentioned, is no good. Failing to eat could also contribute to bad breath through a buildup of stomach acid, so make sure you are eating enough!

carrots sitting on a counter

7. Snack On Raw Fruits And Vegetables

Snacking on raw, fibrous fruits and vegetables like apples, celery, and carrots can help keep your mouth healthy. Chewing these fibrous foods scrubs plaque from teeth, stimulates gums, and freshens breath. Snacking on these foods will also increase saliva production and prevent dry mouth.

Related: Want Strong, Healthy Teeth? Don’t Do These 7 Things

8. Drink Tea

In addition to drinking enough water, adding a cup or two of green tea throughout the day can have additional breath-freshening benefits. According to a 2012 review, green tea can improve halitosis—at least temporarily—due to the antibacterial properties of the polyphenols found in green tea leaves. So drink up!

putting peppermint essential oil into a glass with baking soda

9. Try A Baking Soda Rinse

You can make a simple homemade mouth rinse packed with odor-fighting and antibacterial properties by adding 1 teaspoon of baking soda to 1 cup of water and adding a few drops of peppermint essential oil. Shake or stir to mix, then swish the rinse around in your mouth for 30 seconds before spitting it out. Store the remaining rinse mixture in an airtight container to use later.

Related: How To Make Homemade Mouthwash For Whiter, Stronger Teeth

woman using a tongue scraper

10. Scrape Your Tongue

Another option for improving bad breath is to start using a tongue scraper. Tongue scraping may help remove dead skin cells, bacteria, and other nasties that can contribute to less-than-fresh breath.

toothbrush in a mason jar on a bathroom counter

11. Brush And Floss Regularly

And finally, having a good oral hygiene routine can take care of a lot of the causes of halitosis. Brushing and flossing help to remove plaque and bacteria from your mouth, and there really isn’t any substitute for these practices that’s as effective as the real thing!

Brush your teeth and tongue morning and night with a quality toothbrush, and floss once a day with dental floss too. Not only will your breath improve, but your dentist is sure to be impressed at your next checkup. (And as an added bonus, you won’t have to lie about flossing.)

Related: Oil Pulling For A Healthier Mouth!

Still Struggling With Bad Breath?

If, despite your best efforts, you are still experiencing bad breath that just won’t go away, schedule an appointment with your dentist ASAP. Chronic halitosis can be a sign of a more serious health issue, which is not something you want to ignore.

Do you have a go-to remedy for bad breath?

Jill Nystul Photo

Jill Nystul (aka Jillee)

Jill Nystul is an accomplished writer and author who founded the blog One Good Thing by Jillee in 2011. With over 30 years of experience in homemaking, she has become a trusted resource for contemporary homemakers by offering practical solutions to everyday household challenges.
I share creative homemaking and lifestyle solutions that make your life easier and more enjoyable!

About Jillee

Jill Nystul

Jill’s 30 years of homemaking experience, make her the trusted source for practical household solutions.

About Jillee

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  • There is so much to read and learn in each and every email, I hardly have time to absorb it all. It is such a variety of useful information that so many topics. Thank you.

  • I had really terribly bad breath when I was growing up. Every morning, my father would fuss at me about it, as if I hadn’t brushed my teeth, when I had. When I was about to graduate from high school, a doctor noticed I had cavities in my tonsils where food would get trapped and putrefy. If I worked at it, gagging the whole time, I could clear out those cavities and have clean breath for a month or two, until it started over again. I begged doctors for the next few years to remove my tonsils, and finally one agreed. I have never had bad breath since then.

    A post script is that I was told the drainage would be noticeably worse down my throat, but since I never noticed any difference, I wonder if my tonsils ever worked properly anyway.

  • Use a tongue cleanser with the Waterpik. Also, oil pulling with unrefined organic coconut oil (Ayurvedic – swishing the melted coconut oil in mouth for at least 15 minutes).

  • I agree. It’s important to consult a Doctor if you suspect your bad breath may be caused by medical issues., It can also be a sign of sinus infection. We used to know a gal – who I’m sure is long gone, who was known for always having bad breath. My folks weren’t the only ones who commented on it. I think if it’s someone your close to you could maybe have a private chat with.

  • I make a batch of salt water & brush my teeth with it. Tastes good and clears up the funky mouth.
    1 cup of boiling water and 1 scant teaspoon of “Real Salt” is what I use. Good quality salt is best.

  • Having horrible breath for years was a constant battle. I had good oral care, strong teeth, good diet, etc. I did notice that after communion (wine) it wasn’t as bad. I took to eating menthol cough drops for years and years but still suspected it was from my stomach. Finally when I had a constant dull ache in my stomach that was relieved when I ate, I told my doctor who ordered an upper GI test. It disclosed a very weird thing that he said was more common to people of Eastern European heritage and I was German and Scotch Irish. I had several large Carcinoids removed from my stomach and immediately felt better. My surgeon explained they are a natural way for the body to regulate stomach acid. You produce acid in order to digest food. The acid is produced to fight the growing small carcinoids in your stomach which then slowly grow back and you again produce acid to eat them away. You must produce the acid in order to digest food. I had already been diagnosed with autoimmune disease which caused my body to stop producing much acid and this caused the carcinoids to grow larger. So I’ve had two trips to the hospital to remove them and assume I’ll live long enough to do that again – it isn’t cancerous but the ache and constant eating are bad for me. (We can’t consume strong enough acid to counteract the effect.) I said all this to help others that may be having bad breath for medical reasons so please be sure to tell your doctor if this is a constant problem for you since it may be just a symptom.

  • A rinse with warm salted water or with a few drop of tea tree oil helps prior to brushing. My Mom would always eat a few springs of fresh parsley – claimed it worked – takes getting used to the taste, though. I used to go on a lot of canoe trips in N. Ontario. We would look for wild mint growing and chew on them so I imagine domesticated mint would work, too.

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