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Essentials: Dental Hygiene - A Guide To Fresh Breath

Have you ever gone on a date and realized your breath wasn't fresh or, possibly worse, went in for a good night kiss and immediately wanted to run because of improper dental hygiene? You're not alone. After a quick Google search I found a random article that stated "one in four people have bad breath and some studies have reported that approximately 50 percent of the adult population does have." I can't verify the authenticity of that specific quote (especially since they didn't use proper grammar) but it's safe to say that bad breath is a pretty common problem.

We're here to help! In our continuing "Essentials" series, we wanted to branch out and tell you about our favorite products for fresh breath. This is a list of some essential equipment that you should have in your dental arsenal to battle halitosis, which is the fancy name for gross breath.

Let's start out with the first thing you should pick up to battle your harsh breath; a good tongue cleaner.

Tounge Brushes - Orabrush and Tung Review

This is an often over-looked piece of equipment that everyone should have. Most people know that brushing your teeth is important, but a lot of people neglect brushing their tongue. Wrong move, Jack! Here's why:

  1. Even though your tongue looks "flat" it's full of ridges, bumps, and grooves. Bacteria and food get stuck in there and it's important to get it out.
  2. When you get rid of that gross food and bacteria, it doesn't just help your breath but also aids in preventing tooth decay and gum disease.
  3. A lot of the bacteria in your mouth is on your teeth, but there is more around your tongue and gums. Think of it this way; would you only wash the tires of your car?

Here are some tools to help you combat the grossness that is your mouth:

The Tung Brush

Yes, you can use your regular toothbrush to brush your tongue, but it's not the best tool for the job. A toothbrush is thin, has long bristles, and is generally very soft. In comparison, the Tung brush is flat, wide, and coarse. This design means no more gagging on your toothbrush and sounding like a fool during your morning bathroom routine! Seriously though, this thing is great. At first it kind of feels like you're getting a pedicure on your tongue, but once you get past that feeling you'll be really impressed with how clean and fresh your mouth feels. Oh, and your tongue will be back to it's normal red color for the first time in years.

Here's the breakdown of Pros and Cons:

PROS: Works awesome, inexpensive for the extra care it provides, leaves your breath so fresh and so clean, leaves a long-lasting fresh taste when you use it with the Tung Gel, gets rid of bad breath, made in America.

CONS: No built in tongue scraper to help get rid of the gross stuff as you brush.

Purchase it here: Amazon

The Orabrush

The Orabrush is a competitor to the Tung Brush, and has a pad of short rubber bristles instead of the more nylon feel of the Tung Brush. It also has a built-in tongue scraper that works like a snow plow to remove build-up as you brush. The good part of the brush is that the tongue scraper does help to remove the build-up, but the Tung Brush seemed to clean a little better. Our recommendation? Grab a Tung Brush and scraper combo for your home use, and pick up an Orabrush for when you're traveling. Boom, perfect.

PROS: Cleans your tongue well, built-in scraper makes this very convenient, gets rid of bad breath, made in the USA.

CONS: Bristles aren't as firm as some other brushes.

Purchase it here: Amazon

Cheap Option

The most basic option is a normal tongue cleaner. The only way we would recommend getting one of these is it you're using it with the Tung Brush as part of a super-combo. Seriously, it's a $2 difference in price. Go for something that works.

PROS: Slightly cheaper.

CONS: It's like using a squeegee on your arm to wash yourself.

Purchase it here: Amazon

Dental Guards - Dentek Review

Now, this might not seem like something that will help freshen your breath, but it is! And it helps get rid of headaches in some cases too. Excessive teeth grinding, also known as bruxism, can cause hypersensitive teeth, sore jaw muscles, and headaches. Also, it may cause tooth wear and can damage teeth and the repairs, like crowns and fillings, in your mouth. If you wear down your teeth and break fillings, that leads to a lot of problems. Including opening the door for bad breath germs to live in the cracks.

FYI: Be sure to clean your mouth guard on a regular basis, or they will actually help to cause bad breath. You can use your toothbrush or just buy some cleaning tablets for them.

Dentek Comfort Fit

This is a small device that is adjustable and fits on the outsides of your teeth. It's not that noticeable when you're wearing it, but I found that it was easier to spit out of your mouth in the middle of the night. Yes, I have been wearing the mouth guards for these reviews, and no, it's not that embarrassing. This unit is a little less expensive than the Maximum Protection model, and it comes with two in a package. Not bad.

PROS: Relatively inexpensive, easy to fit to your mouth, works well as long as it's in your mouth.

CONS: You might spit it out.

Purchase it here: Amazon

Dentek Maximum Protection Dental Guard

The Maximum Protection Dental Guard from Dentek is pretty intense. You have a kit that comes with the unit so that you can mold it to fit the shape of your teeth, and after you're done with the 3 minute process you have a custom fit dental guard that fits your entire upper mouth.

It's bigger than the Comfort Fit, but it seems to stay in better. Plus, if you're in a pinch you might be able to use it as protection in your annual flag football game.

PROS: Sturdy, durable, form-fitting, works well to stop teeth from grinding.

CONS: Might be a little too big for people with really small mouths.

Purchase it here: Amazon

Dental Basics Review

So the items above may be new to you, but there are some basics that everyone should use. Check them out below along with some helpful hints.

Toothbrush and Toothpaste

This is pretty simple; brush your teeth (and tongue) twice a day to help with bad breath. And to keep your teeth from becoming cavity-filled daggers of pain in your mouth.

PRO TIP: For the average person, you want to use a soft toothbrush since it's safe for your teeth, more comfortable, and medium and hard toothbrushes can actually damage your teeth and gums.

Purchase some here: Amazon


Again, this should be a given but; use mouthwash. It gets rid of food particles in your mouth, kills germs and bacteria, and enhances your brushing and flossing routine to get rid of all the stuff you just cleaned.

PRO TIP: If you really want to go super-charged in your mouthwash routine, you should gargle with peroxide. Just take a swig, rinse it in your mouth, and spit it out; the oxygen bubbles in the hydrogen peroxide destroy the bacteria in your mouth that causes bad breath.

Purchase some here: Amazon


This is the one that everyone hates doing, but it's really important. You should floss once a day, since it gets rid of food particles and plaque (which is just another name for a coating of bacteria around your teeth). It also helps to prevent periodontal disease which is a common cause of bad breath.

PRO TIP: If you can, you should floss at night. It's more helpful to get rid of the day's food before you go to sleep for 8 hours with it in your mouth. Also, use picks if you hate flossing; it simplifies the process and speeds it up.

Purchase some here: Amazon


Be smart when you want to keep your breath the freshest; garbage in, garbage out. Garlic, onion, fish, and more can cause bad breath that lasts for hours after you brush. And smoking or chewing tobacco? Yeah, it smells as bad as it makes you look while you do it. So stop.

PRO TIP: Add some fresh fruits to your diet to help clean teeth naturally. An apple will help clean your teeth by boosting your saliva production and rinsing your mouth naturally. Also, yogurt can be a huge help. The natural enzymes and good bacteria in yogurt go a long way in keeping your breath fresh.


Chewing gum helps in multiple ways; it helps increase saliva, gets loose particles of food out of your teeth, and it has a minty fresh smell to it. Just make sure it's sugarless, because the bacteria in your mouth love to ferment sugar, which makes bad breath even worse.

PRO TIP: Staying hydrated isn't only good for your health, it really does help keep bad breath away. A dry mouth is a dirty mouth, so drink a lot of water throughout your day.

Purchase some here: Amazon

Photography Essentials - Wrap Up

We hope this helps keep your breath fresh on your next date!

Also, make sure you share this with your friends who really need some...help. Remember; knowing is half the battle, and many people just don't know how bad their breath is. Be a friend, and send them to this page.

And what if someone sent you to this page? Well, we're sorry to hear about your breath, but your friend is a saint for letting you know how to get help. You'll thank them, and us, later!

Timmy the Tooth - Breath is Harsh!

About The Author


Ray is the founder and president of Bro Council. As a shameless plug, he wants to remind you to check out The City 5K, his personal website, and Rugged Events.

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