Fortunately, the problem is entirely reversible, and for most patients, this can happen relatively quickly.
The cornerstones of oral hygiene are:
- Daily tooth brushing preferably with an electric toothbrush
- Interdental flossing
- Use of interdental brushes
- Tongue cleaning (with a manual toothbrush or tongue scraper)
Also, especially for those people with lots of dental work, or smokers, regular visits to the hygienist for professional cleaning are an ideal way of keeping the breath fresh.
Mouthwashes, diet, increasing water intake and smoking cessation can also help but ultimately, the bacteria that cause the problem to recolonise the tooth every 12 hours. This is the rationale behind cleaning your teeth twice a day.
Ultimately, you can never be completely rid of these bacteria, so it is essential to maintain a regular, thorough oral hygiene regime.
Smoking cessation advice can be accessed through the hygienist, and other relevant medical issues such as gastric reflux should be assessed by your GP. Foods that cause bad breath like garlic and onion should probably best be avoided until the problem is resolved!