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How to Get Rid of Alcohol Breath: What Works and What Doesnt


She has over ten years of experience in substance abuse treatment and was appointed a Global Goodwill Ambassador in 2019 for her efforts in residential addiction treatment. Once you’ve brushed and flossed, make sure to gargle and rinse with a good mouth wash. Mouth washes are designed to eliminate bad breath and tend to have a minty scent that will cover alcohol breath. Gargle how to avoid drinking again after sobriety for the recommended time listed on the bottle, usually around 30 seconds, and then spit into the sink and rinse with water. If your body reeks of alcohol, taking a nice bath or shower will help clean your pores of alcohol and the sweat you build up while drinking. Make sure you soap up to cover up any lingering scent and leave you smelling and feeling fresh and clean.

By having a shower after a night of drinking, you can help remove that alcoholic smell from your body. When used in combination with brushing your teeth, your alcohol breath should be largely eliminated. Every person’s body processes alcohol at different speeds, so it’s hard to know just how long alcohol breath will last.

Main Causes of Bad Breath

Some people build up plaque faster than others and may just need more frequent cleanings. You can also schedule an appointment with a periodontist who can see if gum disease is the cause of halitosis. Brush twice a day, for at least two minutes each time, and floss once a day. Remember to clean your tongue with your brush or a tongue scraper, which you can buy in the oral health aisle. The main halitosis symptom is foul-smelling breath that doesn’t go away.

When the production of saliva slackens or stops, a condition known as xerostomia, bad breath is likely to follow. This happens naturally while you sleep, which is why most people find their breath to be a bit stinky upon waking up. But if the problem persists throughout the day, treatment may be worth considering. When people consume alcohol the body treats it like a toxin and attempts to break it down into acetic acid. It only manages to metabolize about 90% of alcohol this way and the rest gets excreted in different ways.

Chew gum

Always consult your physician before beginning any treatment or therapy program. Any designations or references to therapies are for marketing purposes only and do not represent actual products. Both onion and garlic produce a powerful smell that radiates from your pores and mouth. You may not want to kiss someone afterwards, but because these smells are also excreted through your pores they combat one strong odor with another.

  • Now that you understand why alcohol makes your breath smell bad, let’s check out ways to prevent it.
  • Saliva helps keep your mouth clean by removing food particles that lead to bad breath.
  • Try to stick to a few drinks over the course of the evening.

How much time it’ll take is hard to say since we all process alcohol at different rates and there are all kinds of variables that impact alcohol metabolism. Like every other method, it won’t actually get rid of the smell, but it will help mask it until the gum has lost its flavor. Cleveland Clinic Community Care puts patients first by offering comprehensive, coordinated, personalized healthcare. Hold your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle toward your gums and use short strokes, about the width of a tooth. Make sure you get to the outside, inside and top of each tooth. Be sure its size and shape allow you to reach all areas of your mouth.

How to Get Rid (or Prevent) Alcohol Breath

Alternating between alcoholic and nonalcoholic beverages is another good strategy. Allowing your body to break down the alcohol will reduce alcoholic breath and provide you with the energy to expel it through your lungs and breath. Moderate drinking can help you cover up the smell of alcohol. Give your body time to process what you just had before consuming more alcohol. It is recommended to have just one drink per hour, depending on your weight and age.

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About the Author:

Mike Dillard

Creator of The Mike Dillard Podcast

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