Best ways to avoid bad breath (and how to improve it)

Best ways to avoid bad breath (and how to improve it)


Bad breath is a common problem for many adults, with most people experiencing bad breath at times. However, for some people, bad breath is a regular problem, and they struggle to find a simple solution. 

Also known as halitosis, bad breath is mostly caused by sulphur-producing bacteria that live on the surface of your tongue and throat, which can often negatively impact personal relationships and someone’s quality of life. It’s a common problem that will affect self-confidence, and how one engages in conversations or interacts with friends, work colleagues, and family. Cleaning your tongue can help to remove the bacteria that create a bad odour. It is good to include brushing your tongue as part of your daily oral hygiene routine, morning and night. 

Foods that are high in protein can also cause bad breath, from producing ammonia as your body breaks it down when digesting. Some foods also dehydrate the mouth which promotes bacteria that causes bad breath. Below we look at everyday foods that can cause bad breath, along with those foods that can have a positive impact on improving it.


Onions are high in sulphur, when these compounds enter the bloodstream they lead to bad breath that comes from both your mouth and lungs, this is why trying your best effort to clean your mouth to reduce the odour, it only sometimes helps to fight the issue.


Garlic is a great ingredient to increase the flavour of most dishes, making your meal taste better. However, it also is a common cause of bad breath.

The scent of garlic typically hangs around, having an impact on your breath long after you’ve eaten your meal. Garlic lingers to the extent that it can also enter the bloodstream and exit through the lungs, which is why people sometimes have the feeling they are tasting garlic on their breath long after eating it in their meal.


When sugar is mixed with bacteria in your mouth it can breed, causing bad breath.  Those looking to combat bad breath often chew gum as a way to keep their breath fresh, just be sure to only use sugar-free gum. 

Acidic foods

Fruits and vegetables that are highly acidic also create an environment for bad bacteria to spread in your mouth. This is not just your typical citrus fruits, it also includes foods such as tomatoes, blueberries and grapes.


Foods that can help improve your breath



If you can swap out acidic fruits for apples, then you’re going to be greatly reducing the risk of bad breath. Apples can break down the compounds that lead to bad breath, so they are a natural mouth cleanser. Melons are also a great fruit option as they are high in vitamin C, which not only keeps bad bacteria under control but it’s also known to help fight gum disease and gingivitis.


Spinach helps to neutralise your mouth’s PH levels which helps to counteract bad breath.  Along with spinach, kale, lettuce and cabbage can also all be foods that help you fight against bad breath.

In Summary

If you have persistent bad breath, we recommend you come in and have it checked by our dentist at our practice located in Kew. We also recommend routine preventative dental care such as a checkup and clean every 3 months for your teeth and gums. On occasion, bad breath can be a sign of a more serious health issue, such as gingivitis – treatable gum problems, through to serious conditions like periodontitis, serious gum disease that leads to the erosion of bone.