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Bad Breath from Acid Reflux: Treatment

Bad breath (Halitosis) can be a medical problem of acid reflux or GERD as the stomach contents are backward into your throat, causing an unpleasant odor. There are several home remedies that can help bad breath from acid reflux.

1. Maintain good oral hygiene:

    • Brush your teeth regularly at least twice a day for at least 2 minutes per time
    • Do not go to bed without brushing your teeth
    • Move the brush gently in a circular motion to effectively remove plaque
    • Choose a toothbrush with soft bristles to protect gums and tooth enamel. Change the toothbrush every 3 – 4 months or when the bristles are deformed
    • Use mouthwash containing antiseptic and deodorant ingredients
    • Floss after meals for optimal effectiveness of tooth cleaning

2. Have a healthy eating habits:

    • Limit eating acid reflux-triggered foods such as fast food, too sour or too spicy food
    • Do not eat too fast or overeat
    • Limit foods that can increase acidity in the stomach like citric fruits
    • Limit drinking caffeinated beverages such as coffee, tea, and soft drinks
    • Best foods for acid reflux include green vegetables, whole grains, ginger, non-citrus fruits, etc.
    • Divide meals into smaller meals throughout the day rather than three large meals
    • Avoid eating 2 hours before going to bed. If you must eat, choose light snacks like fruits or vegetables
    • Avoid dry mouth. Drink water regularly throughout the day, with a minimum of 2 liters of water per day
    • Stay hydrated by eating lots of water-containing vegetables like watermelon, pumpkin, cucumber, apple, orange, grape, strawberry, etc., to help the body replenish the water and nutrients it needs

3. Have a healthy lifestyle:

    • Exercise regularly
    • Do not exercise or lie down immediately after eating
    • Avoid wearing tight clothing
    • Maintain a healthy weight to reduce pressure on your stomach and your ability to process food
    • Maintain good mental and physical health
    • Do not smoke

4. Medication:

    • Antacids: used in cases of mild reflux by neutralizing acid stomach and relieving heartburn
    • Proton pump inhibitors: used in more severe acid reflux to reduce acid production in the stomach by irreversibly inhibiting the stomach’s proton pump
    • Histamine blockers (H2 blockers): helps reduce acid production in the stomach by inhibiting the action of histamine H2. This medication is usually used to treat mild acid reflux and is not recommended for long-term use


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