The Secret to Fresh Breath

If there is one universal truth, it is that kid’s breath stinks!  Unfortunately, they are not yet at an age where they notice the bad breath, or even know how to take care of it, so it just gets worse.  Of course, before you can take care of a problem, you have to understand what causes it.  Below are the top five causes of bad breath in children, and how to combat them.  

Not Brushing

If you don’t ensure that you properly brush your child’s teeth, they can develop halitosis.  Make sure that your child brushes twice a day, for two full minutes.  Use a pea sized amount of toothpaste that has fluoride in it on a soft bristled brush. Ensure that they brush all of their teeth, and don’t forget to scrub the tongue as well.  Change their toothbrush every few months.  If your child is not yet old enough to brush themselves, you should do it for them.  You or your child should also be flossing their teeth twice a day.   Never go to bed without brushing and flossing your child’s teeth.  

Eating Sweets

Sugar and other sticky foods can get stuck on your child’s teeth and in their mouth.  Your child probably will not notice the sticky buildup in their mouth as they will naturally be distracted by other things.  Other foods such as garlic, onions, or spices can affect the way that your child’s breath smells.  You should always rinse out your child’s mouth after they eat sweets and high-odor foods, and if possible, brush their teeth after meals.  


Sometimes,  a cold or the flu can cause be the cause of your child’s bad breath.  In this case the bad breath is caused by two things: bacteria and mouth breathing.  Mouth breathing prevents saliva from washing away bad-breath causing bacteria.  If your child is sick and has bad breath, you may just have to wait until the sickness dissipates.  


If your child does not drink enough water, their dehydration can lead to halitosis.  Dry mouth is one of the leading causes of bad breath.  If your child’s mouth is dry, it is not producing enough saliva to wash away the bacteria.  If your child is between the ages of 5 and 8, they should drink 5 glasses a day.  If they are between 9 and 12, they should drink 7.  Of course, if they are exercising on a hot day, they should be drinking more water.  

Bacteria From Toys

Toddlers are notorious for putting things in their mouths.  The objects that they chew on have lots of bacteria, and some of that bacteria can cause bad breath.  Make sure that you sanitize your child’s toys, especially if they are teething.