In addition to withstanding thirst and hunger, another challenge to face when fasting is the problem of bad breath. The reason, not eating and drinking for hours can make the mouth emit an unpleasant smell. However, there are several ways you can prevent bad breath during fasting.
Bad breath during fasting is usually triggered by the condition of the dry oral cavity. Dry mouth is caused by reduced saliva production due to the absence of food and drink that enters the mouth during fasting.
Saliva plays an important role in cleaning food waste and inhibiting the growth of bacteria in the oral cavity. Reduced saliva makes bacteria in the oral cavity multiply rapidly.
When this happens, bacteria will produce a lot of gases that cause unpleasant odours, thus triggering bad breath.
In addition to dry mouth, bad breath can also be caused by several other things, namely:
- Rarely brush your teeth and clean your tongue
- Dental and oral problems, including cavities, gingivitis, and canker sores
- Problems in the nasal cavity and throat, such as sinusitis and tonsillitis
- Consumption of foods that smell pungent, such as onions and shrimp paste.
- Smoking habits
- Certain diseases, such as stomach acid disease (GERD), diabetes, kidney disease, liver disorders, or respiratory tract infections
Tips to Prevent Bad Breath During Fasting
Bad breath during fasting may cause a person to become less confident and reluctant to interact with others. If you are disturbed by the complaint, try to do the following ways to prevent bad breath:
1. Clean your teeth and mouth regularly
The most important thing to do to prevent bad breath during fasting is to maintain dental and oral hygiene. The methods are as follows:
- Brush your teeth 2 times a day regularly, after suhoor and after breaking the fast. Use a fluffy toothbrush and toothpaste containing fluoride.
- Clean the tongue after brushing your teeth with a special tongue cleaner.
- Use dental floss to clean the leftovers that are still tucked between the teeth.
- Gargle with a mouthwash that does not contain alcohol. Mouthwash or mouthwash containing alcohol is not recommended because it makes the mouth dry.
2. Consume enough drinking water every day
Drinking enough water can increase saliva production, thus preventing dry mouth that can cause bad breath. It is recommended that you drink at least 8 glasses of water daily, both during the fasting month and when not fasting.
To adequately intake fluids in the fasting month, you can drink 2 glasses of water during suhoor, 2 glasses of water when breaking the fast, and 4 glasses of water at night before going to bed.
3. Increase the consumption of fruits and vegetables
Fruits and vegetables contain many antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and water that can increase saliva production and prevent the appearance of bad breath odours. Because it can increase saliva production, fruits and vegetables are also well consumed to prevent the growth of germs that can cause bad breath.
Therefore, make sure there are vegetables, especially green vegetables, such as spinach, broccoli, carrots, and celery, in your suhoor and iftar menu. In addition to vegetables, you are also advised to eat fruits, such as apples, oranges, melons, watermelons, and pineapples.
4. Avoid consumption of sweet and sharp smelling foods
Avoid eating foods with a pungent aroma when suhoor. Also avoid the consumption of foods and drinks that contain a lot of sugar, both during suhoor and iftar, because it can make bacteria that cause bad breath to multiply faster.
5. Quit smoking
Cigarettes contain tobacco that causes bad breath. In addition, smoking habits can also lead to reduced saliva production as well as an increased risk of gingivitis.
The above can also cause bad breath and increase the risk of problems in the teeth and mouth, even health disorders in general.
Toothpaste Content to Overcome Bad Breath
To prevent and overcome bad breath during fasting, brush your teeth regularly with toothpaste containing fluoride and natural ingredients that are able to overcome bad breath, such as:
Eucalyptus is a cleaning agent that can be used to clean teeth and reduce the buildup of plaque and bacteria in the teeth that cause cavities. In addition, eucalyptus in toothpaste products is also well used to maintain gum health.
In addition to eucalyptus, natural extracts from fennel in toothpaste are also useful as natural breath fresheners.
Bad breath during fasting can generally be overcome by maintaining dental and oral hygiene, as well as doing the methods mentioned above.
However, if bad breath does not go away, you are advised to consult a dentist for dental and oral examinations. Once the cause is known, the doctor will provide appropriate treatment. If the cause is not in the teeth or mouth, for example, due to stomach acid disease or sinusitis, the dentist will refer you to a specialist or general practitioner.