Halitosis for any bad breath virgins is absolutely not the long lost relative of Halle Berry!

Everyone has experienced a day, maybe two where their breath is like an open grave and secretes the most indescribable gut wrenching stink that causes others to recoil, feel physically sick and want to cry!  

And I’m not just referring to those garlic heavy nights or when you have overdosed on the onions at lunchtime - although come on - have a thought for others!

I am talking about that breath so intoxicating that the people with whom you are trying to converse with lose all-natural capacity to understand and any conversation or exchange becomes unintelligible! 

Bad breath can be a brutal thing. The expression poop breath comes from those people who smoke and drink a lot of coffee and don't brush their teeth enough. Bad breath can be a massive turn off when it comes to relationships.

And don’t deny it, we have all been there!  On the receiving end; unable to breathe, tears welling up in a situation we don’t really know how to handle without causing offence!  Do you tell this person?  Offer them a chewing gum? Leave a bottle of mouthwash on their desk?  Or just get as far away as possible and as quickly as possible back into air that smells so much sweeter?

Whilst bad breath is not dangerous, it is definitely embarrassing, especially as we get used to our own odours and often we don't even know we have it! One in four people are thought to have bad breath on a regular basis and severe halitosis can affect one out of 10 unlucky people.

There is nothing worse than someone shying away from you as the putrid odour can get in between people in a negative way.  Is the person you are talking to starting to fidget? Do they constantly look around and can't even look at you in the face? Do they close their mouths tight and kind of purse their lips and don't even say anything back, but just nod their heads while looking away trying to gain clean air from some place other than in your direction in the mission not to pass out?

It’s not even morning breath, although this is bad enough!

Everyone has morning breath to some degree which can be unpleasant and probably isn't the way you want to greet your partner, or the day!  The first breath of the day can be cruel!  It is very common, and you can tell by the sour nasty taste in one’s mouth or dry mouth syndrome on awaking that you need to step away from the duvet and make your way quickly to the bathroom to brush teeth and gargle immediately thus taking care of this unfortunate happening before it is noticed.

But what happens over night to cause this foul breath?  Does the Halitosis goblin visit? 

No, it’s all down to saliva which is natures cleaning agent for the mouth.  Saliva is produced by a conscious desire i.e. when your throat is dry or though the action of chewing which helps in the digestion of food. So, it figures that when your asleep the body produces less saliva.

Saliva is like a super hero and washes away dead food particles and other debris and also fights bacteria with the chemicals and proteins found in it.

Without the saliva’s cleaning power, bacteria happily munch the dead cells on your tongue, teeth, and gums releasing volatile sulfur compounds which generate the villain morning breath and its pal bad bacteria!

You would hope that a close friend or family member will give you a heads up if your mouth is less-than-fresh, but some people have difficulty being the bearer of bad news.

There are a few traditional methods and popular home remedies of self testing and determining bad breath.  However it can be difficult due to the way our bodies are set up and function, it can be tricky for a person to smell, and then judge, the quality of their own breath.  That means it's quite possible, and even likely, that a person may have halitosis and not know it, because they literally can't smell their own breath.

So, with self-testing, the trick is to figure out a way around this conundrum.

Cup your hands and sniff the exhaled air often gives poor results, so instead lick your wrist and then wait about five seconds to let the saliva dry a little. Now smell it.  Well, what do you think? For better or worse? 

Want a second opinion?  Use a spoon or a cotton swab to scrape the back of the tongue. This will remove the bacteria from this area of the mouth, which are what often cause bad breath. Take a look at the gunk you've scraped off. It can be just a clear runny liquid. But often enough it's a thick whitish, yellow or even brown goo.  Generally speaking, the darker the colour and thicker the goo, the more likely you're going to discover breath odour.  If this substance is smelly, you know that you have bad breath.

Mints, mouthwashes, chewing gum and other similar breath sweeteners are useful masks but they only cover up the problem and offer a temporary solution at best.

Bad breath therefore is the result of outside or internal factors. In other words, you may have either eaten or drank something that causes people to wince as you share a story. Of course, gum disease is a factor and another not so obvious possibility is a pre-existing condition like diabetes which carries symptoms like bad breath.

Dieters in particular have high instances of bad breath. Since losing weight may be more desirable than bad breath, most people are loath to give up the diet. In this case, drinking extra water is the only viable solution. This will flush out the body and reduce the bad breath from excess ketones.

Chemicals in foods can get into the bloodstream and then be breathed out from the lungs. Most people are familiar with the smell of garlic, spicy foods and alcoholic drinks on the breath of people who have recently eaten or drunk these. Various other foods and medicines can cause a smell on the breath. This type of bad breath is temporary and easily cured by not eating the food. However, some people eat spiced food every day. As a result, they will constantly have a typical smell on their breath.

Ways to combat having a satan breath and becoming your own oral hygiene superhero has got to be ensuring that you floss and brush at least two times a day which will remove most but not all of the odour causing agents. 

Use a bacteria killing mouth rinse especially before going to bed and a tongue scraper which is designed to literally scrape the debris and bacteria off the tongue. But avoid using your toothbrush to do the latter job since bacteria and food particles can remain embedded between the bristles.

Drinking water will help with the dry mouth as will a high protein diet  as saliva uses proteins to fight bacteria.

With good oral hygiene and being honest when your breath stinks you will be able to avoid those awkward moments and no longer will others feel that their eyes are burning when you talk!


Did You Know?.....

More like Gone with the stench!  It is rumored Clark Gable's dentures were the cause of his bad breath and his co-star, Vivian Leigh, said, "Kissing Clark Gable in Gone with the Wind was not that exciting, his dentures smelled something awful.

Halitophobia is the exaggerated fear that one has bad breath.

On BadBreathDay, KŌSHŪ – a once in a lifetime dining experience to feast on the world’s most delicious yet smelliest food for FREE opens for just one day only, in London’s Soho W1. KŌSHŪ means “bad breath” in Japanese and Michelin-starred chef, Michael Wignall has created a short tasting menu of six Japanese-inspired delicious but stinky, bad breath-inducing dishes for diners to trial for FREE at the restaurant pop-up.



  • Fennel

Fennel acts as an excellent mouth freshener that helps control bad breath. It also contains antimicrobial properties that fight the bacteria in the mouth.

Slowly chew a tablespoon of fennel to freshen your breath and stimulate the production of saliva.

You can also drink fennel tea a couple of times a day. To make this tea, steep one or two teaspoons of fennel seeds in a cup of hot water for 5 to 10 minutes


Cinnamon contains cinnamic aldehyde, an essential oil that not only covers up bad breath, but also reduces the number of bacteria in your mouth.

To treat bad breath, follow this remedy twice daily.

  1. Boil one teaspoon of cinnamon powder in a cup of water.
  2. You may add some bay leaves and cardamom too.
  3. Strain the solution and use it as a mouth rinse to refresh your breath.
  • Fenugreek

Fenugreek tea is highly effective when bad breath is caused by catarrhal infections.

  1. Boil a teaspoon of fenugreek seeds in a cup of water.
  2. Strain and drink this tea once daily until you get rid of the problem.
  • Cloves

Cloves help freshen your breath and also have antibacterial properties that are very helpful in getting rid of bad breath.

The easiest method is to pop a few pieces of cloves into your mouth and chew them thoroughly. This will eliminate bad breath in a few minutes.

You can also make clove tea. Boil a cup of water, add one teaspoon of ground cloves, and allow it to simmer for 5 to 10 minutes. Drink the tea or use it as a mouthwash twice a day.

  • Parsley

Parsley contains chlorophyll that can help neutralize bad breath.

Simply chew on a fresh parsley sprig to refresh your breath. You can also dip this herb in vinegar and then chew it thoroughly.

Another option is to put parsley leaves through a juicer and sip the juice anytime you need to refresh your breath. It will also aid digestion.

Curing bad breath with a lemon rinse has been used for generations. The acidic content in lemons prevents growth of bacteria in your mouth. Plus, its strong pleasant smell helps mask the bad odour.

Just stir one tablespoon of lemon juice into a cup of water and rinse your mouth with it. You can also add a bit of salt to it and then use it. This remedy will help to solve the problem of dry mouth which is one of the main reasons that contribute to bad breath.


  • Apple Cider Vinegar

Due to its pH balancing effects, apple cider vinegar makes a wonderful remedy for bad breath. You can try any of these remedies depending on your preference.

Stir one tablespoon of raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar into a glass of water and drink it before eating your meals. The vinegar will help in digestion as well as cure bad breath.

Gargle with apple cider vinegar mixed in a cup of water.

  • Baking Soda

Baking soda, also known as bicarbonate of soda, is another great solution for getting rid of and preventing bad breath. It helps balance the levels of acid that contribute to bad breath. Plus, it fights oral bacteria that cause bad breath.

Mix one-half teaspoon of baking soda in a glass of warm water and use it as a mouth rinse once daily until you are satisfied with the results.

Brushing your teeth with baking soda will also help reduce the acidity in your mouth and prevent bacteria from building up on your tongue.

  • Tea Tree Oil

Tea tree oil has antiseptic properties that act like a powerful disinfectant for your mouth. You can get the benefits from tea tree oil in a variety of ways.

Brush your teeth with a toothpaste containing tea tree oil.

Another option is to put a few drops of tea tree oil on your toothbrush along with your regular toothpaste.

You can also mix a few drops of tea tree oil, peppermint oil and lemon oil in a glass of water and use it as a mouthwash.

  • Tea

Normal as well as herbal teas can also help combat bad breath. The antioxidant polyphenols present in both green and black tea can stop the growth of bacteria responsible for bad breath.

You can also  opt for a herbal tea like sage tea. To make this tea, steep one teaspoon of dried sage in a cup of hot water for five minutes. Strain and drink this tea several times a day to keep your breath fresh.