Last Modified on Apr 29, 2016
If you suffer with bad breath day in and day out, rest assured that you are not the only one. Stale breath is a condition that has inundated humankind for centuries, and it often still seems to elude us. However, we have come up with a list of natural cure options to help you overcome your bad breath woes and be on your way to fresher breath. We suggest trying hydrogen peroxide, apple cider vinegar, and activated charcoal first.
What Is Halitosis?
Halitosis can be defined very simply as bad breath. However, the issue itself isn’t quite that simple. Bad breath can be an embarrassing condition that even causes individuals anxiety.
In any case, bad breath is a condition that involves mouth odor caused by a variety of different sources. Some individuals experience the condition as a stale smell while other have more of a foul odor. Certain types of mouth odors may be indicators of more serious conditions.
What Causes Bad Breath?
Generally speaking, bad breath is caused by issues in the mouth. Bad breath can be caused by leftover food particles in the mouth, tobacco products, poor dental hygiene, dry mouth, or infections in your mouth. Some issues have roots that lie outside the mouth, though. Mouth, nose, and throat conditions, such as a postnasal drip, may also cause foul-smelling breath. Additionally, certain medication and even certain diseases, like cancer and metabolic disorders, also contribute to breath odor.
Can’t I Just Brush My Teeth?
If you determine that you have bad breath, then one of your first lines of defense is to review your oral hygiene practices. Making changes, such as brushing your teeth more often and drinking plenty of water, are great places to begin with treatment. Additionally, you’ll want to be sure to brush your tongue any time you brush your teeth, as it often harbors excess bacteria. Also be sure to floss daily to eradicate any bacteria hiding in between your teeth.
Do Natural Remedies Work to Freshen Breath?
In addition to amping up your regular hygiene practices, you can also try specific natural treatments to help freshen your breath. Options such as hydrogen peroxide, apple cider vinegar, and activated charcoal help eliminate excess bacteria in your mouth and help to naturally relieve issues of bad breath. If your condition still persists despite changes in your oral hygiene habits as well as these treatment options, you should see a dentist to determine if you have a more serious condition.
1. Hydrogen Peroxide
Hydrogen peroxide is a powerful disinfectant composed of hydrogen and oxygen. Using hydrogen peroxide as an oral mouth rinse helps eliminate existing odor-causing bacteria.
2. Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar contains important digestive enzymes. Supplementing with ACV will help you improve your digestive processes and can alleviate bad breath issues.
3. Activated Charcoal
Activated charcoal is one of world’s oldest and most trusted detoxifying remedies. When used as a paste to brush the teeth, the charcoal absorbs poisons from your body and helps improve intestinal and digestive health to reduce breath odor.
Bad breath has a variety of causes and can be treated using a variety of remedies. Give one of our suggestions a try or add one of your own to our extensive list of reader-contributed remedies for bad breath below!
Remedies for Bad Breath
The Popularity of Bad Breath Remedies - Full List
[YEA] I have a 13yr old daughter and she has had chronic bad breath since age 4. I have tried all types of home remedies, most recently a tea tree oil, peppermint oil & baking soda rinse. It masked the odor for about an hour. We have gone through tons of gum & breath mints. I came across this site a few weeks back, bought the acidophilus and I have not smelt any odor.... Thank goodness!!! She is soooo excited!!!
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Posted by Dimitra (Greece) on 01/30/2015
[YEA] Hello, I m suffering from halitosis since I was kid now I am 28years old. I have been in very bad mood, crying dont want to go to work because my colleagues are teasing me and hummiliate me to others!! I ve heard phrases such as I hate you, smelly dimitra...etc! When I was a teenager no one told me anything for that, in college I started noticing people rubbing their nose and look the other way when I talked.i thought that I should brush my teeth more thorougly.i asked my mother one day and said to me that since I was a kid and in college my breath smelled! She didn't warn me once!! I was so ashamed!!! If she did maybe I wouldnt be in this situation now! The last couple of months I have read everything about halitosis, from tonsil stones till tongue scrapers, apple cider vinegar, warm water with soda and salt....and the list goes on!!! I ve tried everything!! I gargled with avc soda and water chlorexidine 0,2%. I use toothpaste that doesnt contain sodium lauryl sulfate, I floss every day twice a day, after a while 1-2hours bad breath is coming back.
I read your answers and saw that may people talked about probiotics and that some people dont have so much good bacteria and bad bacteria are more in their body. I said to my husband I ll take probiotics, so I bought ACIDOPHILUS 4BILLION. From the first day my taste was better.. my bad breath comes from the tongue when I licked my wrist it was smelly! Now NOTHING!! I take 2-3pills per day.its not a medicine its vegan and doesnt contain dairy. It helps with digestion and balances the bacteria in your body, I m going to the bathroom everyday! I watch my diet very much cause when I eat to much or drink alcohol more than two glasses of wine bad breath comes back, I lick my wrist and I know it. I take one pill after a while its gone. So I eat less every three hours, I have more healthy diet, I eat fruits and vegetables, I eat yogurt and kefir that contains probiotic. I did believe that my bad breath was coming from my mouth but I went to see a dentist and said that its not from my mouth. also check very good your tonsils for tonsil stone I found a crypt with a tonsil stone and now I clean it everyday With clorexidine with a q tip.My bad breath comes from bad bacteria in my body!! So the solution for me is ACIDOPHILUS. I ll try 8billion now. I m doing this 20days now I asked both my parents and my husband and said not bad breath anymore, I went to my job from the first time without chewing a gum! I'm feeling much better now! Also my mother told me that when someone is rubbing his nose doesn't seem that your breath smells.
I hope I helped! Don't be ashamed!! People say bad things because they know nothing!!! They think that your not watching your hygiene! Well prove them wrong!! Try probiotics!
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Posted by Love (Louisville, Ky) on 02/16/2013
[YEA] YAHOO! BRAVO! I've had bad breath for the last 20 years. My teeth and gums are OK... It didn't dawn on me that it could be my stomach?
I'm a green juicer and maybe that was causing my bad breath. Oil pulling helps a bit, but, not enough. So, last week I went to the health store and bought Acidophilus (3 billion) and within 20 minutes my bad breath was gone.... I take two daily.
Usually when I get up in the morning I have bad breath... Not anymore!!!! I'm over the moon happy. I still brush with baking soda and swish with organic coconut oils... But, I finally solved my issue!
I haven't had bad breath since buy acidophilus. I wish I had know years ago. I also foundout that diary and sugar gives you bad breath.
Thank you! Love
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Nashville , Tn
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Posted by Kathryn (Delafield, Wisconsin) on 03/08/2007
[YEA] My friend who sells herbs and vitamins noticed my bad breath and told me how to cure it. He said my small intestine was in need of good bacteria so he put me on Acidophilus (___, 8 billion) per day and now I not only never have bad breath, my gums no longer bleed and hurt and it is helping me with my fight with Candida. I won't go without the Acidophilus ever again!
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New Orleans, Louisiana
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New York, Ny
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U S A
YEA (3) 75% BETTER BUT NOT CURED (1) 25%Posted by Joseph (Botswana) on 04/29/2016
[YEA] It is amazing! Halitosis has completely disappeared since 20th April, 2016.
Dose: two teaspoonful of activated charcoal powder in a glass of drinking water, 3 hrs after dinner.
Brushing teeth using charcoal paste 3 times daily.
Now I am glad, I am smiling, I am cured! God bless you plenty.
EC: Charcoal should always be taken with plenty of water to avoid constipation.
Posted by Paul (Near Boston, Ma) on 04/19/2013
[BETTER BUT NOT CURED] I have had Bad Breath for years but did a good job masking it and like many I tired many things that did not work. Finally I researched the internet and found activated charcoal and gave it a try and I notice a difference the 1st day. In the morning my breath is not is bad and during the morning to lunch period it's not horrible like it used to be. What really got me thinking in the activated charcoal is that a year ago I had a sewer vent pipe that would give out a terrible smell. I fixed the smell by installing a carbon filter which basically traps the toxins like the activated charcoal. Knowing this and knowing that my BB was from the inside I tried the AC and its working great. I think many people concentrate on the mouth when in reality its coming from the inside. I will try the hydrogen peroxide as well but AC is been great!
Posted by Mother Earth (Manila, Philippines) on 01/31/2013
I once read a home remedy book for different diseases such as BB, and it says there that an ordinary charcoal used for grilling foods can be used. Just powderized it and mix it in a glass of water and then drink it... Or buy empty capsules from a drugstore, pour the powderized charcoal in it then drink it w/ a glass of water... after reading about the HP & BS, I guess I'll try those...
Replied by Bill
Westwood, New Jersey
Posted by Yasha (Oslo, Norway) on 06/05/2008
[YEA] re: gum disease, bad breath and burning mouth syndrome: I have been suffering for gum disease and bad breath for the passed few years. I brushed my teeth nearly everytime i eat to avoid bad breath, change toothbrush twice a month, used Corsodyl very often, chewed chewing gums almost every hour, used toothpicks. But all this didn't really help me quit the bad taste in my mouth. It has been so frustrating. But thanks God for charcoal powder. Now the bad breath and burning mouth is gone. I could talk properly without having to worry with my breathy. Really thankful for this remedy.
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Los Angeles, Ca
YEA (1) 100%Posted by Melie (North Carolina) on 09/15/2015
[YEA] Bad Breath:
I have tried hydrogen peroxide, acidophilus and liquid chlorophyll. But none had the immediate effects that the activated charcoal had along with eliminating grains (accept flaxseed) from my diet.
I take 3 capsules a 2-3 hours before bed with a large glass of water.
One day, I was grocery shopping and was hungry so I decided to buy my favorite sushi at the sushi bar. I ate it then went to work and my breath smelled bad. I went to the bathroom and brushed my teeth, then tried to mask the odor with mint gum but it did not help. I realized then that the rice in the sushi was most likely the cause and eliminated rice from my diet.
It's been about a month now any my breath is much improved. I am thankful for the sushi incident because it pinpointed the rice as one of the causes for the bad breath. When I went back grocery shopping, I bought smoke salmon and ate it without any strong after affects.
I am blood type o + and my current diet consists of vegetables, meat, fish, poultry, fruit and flaxseed, which some might consider Paleo. I have eliminated dairy, wheat, and grains, (accept flaxseed). I hope that this information benefits someone.
YEA (1) 100%Posted by Flori (Ma, Usa) on 03/13/2012
[YEA] I got rid of white coating at the back of the tongue, I made three changes first off I started drinking lemon water approximately 1 lemon a day I wound have half in the morning half at night. Next I started taking chlorophyll tablets, just one per day. Then one day I decided to gargle some strong vodka for around three minutes it burnt alot but after I brushed that day I didn't have anymore white coating and I didn't have to do it again as it did not come back again. Thanks to that and I guess the chlorophyll my breath has been fresh.
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YEA (2) 100%Posted by Kterbo (Portland) on 03/20/2016
[YEA] I just discovered how Apple Cider vinegar can 100% improve bad breath and cure halitosis! I tried everything first! I brushed with baking soda, I gargled with peroxide multiple times a day, I bought tongue brushers. I had used a string of products. I used top grade essential oils. I brushed my teeth 4 times a day. I even own an electric toothbrush!
Nothing worked for three years of searching, perpxide helped but didn't cure it. Essential therapeutic grade peppermint helps but doesn't cure it! I needed a cure!!!
I read an article and gave organic Apple Cider a try. Nothing works like Of the Mother Apple Cider Vinegar!! Wow! Here is what I did and what happened.
So I started of with two teaspoons of A.C. mixed with 3 to 4 oz of water and I would drink it every morning. Then in the evening I would drink one teaspoon mixed with 2 oz of water.
My breath immediately started to improve and after 6 days I don't even have morning breath anymore! Ok, so I was on this for two weeks and decided wow, my breath is amazing, what happens if I stop? ..My breath was still fairly good for three days after I stopped but then started to get bad, and on the last day, day 5, I couldn't take it and started back on my routine.
I am up to a tablespoon in the morning and a teaspoon at night. I mix both with at least a few ounces of water. (Please vary this to find what works for you) I have been on it again for a whole week, this morning I woke up thirsty, but I had FRESH BREATH! I mean like .02% of an order but a mild barely there because of dry mouth is normal. I just did my teaspoon of A.C.V. and brushed my teeth. I am so amazed!
I am sure to buy this and do this routine for the rest of my life. Good thing is any grocery store sells this!
I don't even need my tongue cleaners anymore. I heard this stuff was good but, I had to try it for myself. Also, it is not acidic on the stomach like some may worry about, it seams to neutralize the acid from coffee and helps me with heartburn.
This is a no joke cure! I'm a regular female that suffered from halitosis and now it is gone! Now, I only now brush my teeth in the morning and before bed.
Posted by Seema (London, Uk) on 12/19/2011
I read your dilemma and was compelled to write. I myself have suffered for as far back as I can remember. 20 yrs or so. I am now finally Bad breath free. I also had problems with flatulence and body odour - and I'm a woman. How shameful do you think that was for me??!! Yes I had tried everything for all my probs, yes I too felt suicidal at times. I came to control my gas and BO but the most distressing was BB. All the expensive mouthwashes had failed me. After spending hours on the internet while hubby was away on business I came across apple cider vinegar. I took a couple of tsps before every meal and amazingly my breath and gas was better. Well gas was non-existent because of this and even I started sleeping better. I am so thankful for this board, ACV has really sorted out all my problems it seems years of lack of digestive enzymes was the cause of my problems, I even now take probiotics which again helped the breath but never 100%. I know what i;m about to write will sound sooooooo stuuuuuupid but unless you have some thing really internally not right or perhaps are really overly Lactose intolerant (as this means that undigseted lactose gets into intestines and beacuase body cannot break it down it is exhaled in the breath and hydrogen in breath STINKS, but even that is quite temporary) it really is all about the mouth. NOw let me say I brusha nd brush and brush and then use mouthwash and the smell wiuld be back like within minutes. I really believed I had the best oral hygiene.
However when I started flossing my breath every nook and cranny in my mouth by bad breath just disappeared. I'm assuming that you may have tried this but if yiu havent pls do try it. I realise now that becasue my teeth are so tightly packed right next to one another I assumed I didnt need to floss, but that was exactly the cause of my problem now to think I had never flossed since I had my adult teeth sounds just insane no but I really thought brushing and mouthwash would be enough. I can now actually get confidently close to people without the sniggering and enjoy kissing my husband. I wish you well.
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Nagoya City, Japan
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Miami, Fl, Usa
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YEA (1) 100%Posted by Long Sufferer (Albany, Usa) on 04/21/2013
[YEA] I started a self regiment of apple cider vinegar and acidophillus treatment for bad breath and it seem to be working great. This is the day2 of me talking close up without consistent nose pinching and squirming of faces.
I start of by taking 2 activated charcoal overnight before bedtime and brushing with Apple Cider Vinegar as mouth wash. I wake up and take two acidophillus 4billion tablets. Evening, a teaspoon of Apple Cider Vinegar and I am still monitoring this wonderful progress. Also, I want to say the reduction in bloating and gas problem that I have had due to hpylori. Although the hpylori had been treated, I wa still having the bloating feeling, gas, indigestion and nasty feeling in mouth. The only thing I have change in my life style is reduction of beef.
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YEA (3) 100%Posted by Ivan (NYC, NY) on 06/02/2009
[YEA] I used this site to help stop bad breath. I brush with baking soda first,then rinse with acv, then rinse again with baking soda and its been helping the breath a lot. My girlfriend is not gonna lie to me. Im also drinking acv twice a day with a sprinkle of cinnamon and that helps a lot with taste. I put 2 tablespoons in about 8 ounces of water and sprinkle the cinnamon and then chug that bad boy down. It felt great. Ive had previous cases of acid reflux because i drink so much soda. Im gonna buy ph strips next to keep track of my ph levels.