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Cigarettes contain about 600 different ingredients. When burned, these ingredients emit thousands of chemicals, some of which are cancerous, that can cause many health issues.

If you smoke, you know one of these issues is bad breath.

Here are five ways to get rid of cigarette breath.

Tobacco products are almost a guaranteed source of bad breath (halitosis). In addition, cigarettes can cause many oral health problems.

Maintaining your oral hygiene can potentially help you tackle the breath issue. This means brushing at least twice a day and flossing on a regular basis.

You might also want to try frequently rinsing with mouthwash and give tongue scrapers a try.

There are also special toothpastes on the market for people who smoke, although these are often more abrasive than ordinary toothpastes.

These products can address the staining of teeth as a result of tobacco use, but may not be helpful as a long-term halitosis solution compared to quitting altogether.

If you want to give one a try, you can find these special toothpastes online.

Saliva plays a critical role in overall oral hygiene. It flushes your mouth of the food and other particles that may stick to your teeth and gums.

For this reason, it’s important to drink plenty of water throughout the day. This will reduce the number of particles on your teeth and gums, which bacteria can munch on and potentially cause poor breath.

If you feel that you have a lack of saliva more often than not, you may have dry mouth, or xerostomia. In addition to causing bad breath, dry mouth may cause:

  • a constant sore throat
  • a burning sensation in the back of your throat
  • trouble speaking
  • difficulty swallowing

If not treated, a lack of saliva can also result in tooth decay. See a dentist if you suspect you have dry mouth. They can help you find ways to retain moisture in your mouth through products like oral rinses.

You can also try over-the-counter products for dry mouth, like mouthwash, toothpaste, and lozenges.

Gum disease can cause your gums to pull away from your teeth. This results in deep pockets that can fill with odor-causing bacteria, enhancing bad breath.

A dentist can help you identify, diagnose, and treat any underlying issue like gum disease that could be making your breath worse.

Warning signs of gum disease include:

  • red or swollen gums
  • tender or bleeding gums
  • painful chewing
  • loose teeth
  • sensitive teeth

Gum disease begins when bacteria get under your gums and stay on your teeth for too long, forming layers of plaque and tartar.

Early gum disease is known as gingivitis. Regular dental cleanings, in addition to daily brushing and flossing, may treat it.

Your dentist may also recommend deep cleaning below the gum line. In severe cases, surgery is necessary to remove tartar deep under the gums, or help heal bone or gums lost to the condition.

If you have gum disease, quitting smoking can help you heal your gums after you receive treatment.

If you’re out and about and can’t brush your teeth, try chewing sugarless gum for about 5 minutes or less. Gum can encourage your mouth to produce more saliva, which can help remove odor-causing food particles from your teeth.

Be sure to choose sugarless gum. The bacteria in your mouth love sugar and use it to produce acid. Excess acid in your mouth can wear down your teeth and cause bad breath.

Smoking, and tobacco products in general, are known to cause poor breath. In addition, smoking can stain your teeth and put you at risk for many health issues.

People who use tobacco have a higher risk for gum disease. This can potentially contribute to bad breath. Smoking may also impair your sense of smell. That means you may not always be aware of how your breath smells to others.

Quitting smoking can ultimately improve your breath — and overall quality of life.

Fresh breath starts with good oral hygiene. However, staying hydrated and maintaining the amount of saliva in your mouth can also help when it comes to combatting bad breath.

People who smoke are more likely to have bad breath. While products are available that may potentially reduce mouth odor, the fast track to better overall health — and breath — is quitting altogether.