Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier
WebMD

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started
My Medicine
WebMD

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion
    WebMD

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community
    WebMD

    Community

    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Heartburn/GERD Health Center

Font Size
A
A
A

Avoid 6 Health Woes That Ruin a Date

Experts offer tips on preventing embarrassing problems that can derail a promising relationship.

WebMD Feature
Reviewed by Louise Chang, MD

You've landed the date of your dreams. Now what? You've got to do more than primp to avoid being branded a one-date dud. You also must squelch those potential date "bombs" -- minor, but embarrassing, health problems. From bad breath to allergiesallergies, here's a look at the worst offenders and how you can ensure they won't make your date ditch you.

Bad Breath

There's nothing like dragon breath to scare off a first date. Ninety percent of the time, the culprit is thriving right on the surface of your tongue, says Richard Price, DDS, consumer advisor for the American Dental Association. "The dirtier your mouth, the more places there are for bacteria to hide," he says.

But having a clean mouth doesn't necessarily preclude you from bad breath. "Even in the healthiest of mouths, you can still suffer from it," Price tells WebMD. The combination of lingering bacteria on the tongue, when "caught" in the sticky mucus we produce -- up to two quarts per day -- is prime fodder for bad breath. "The bacteria get covered with mucus, expelling by-products when you breathe," Price explains.

So how do you fight bad breath? "You've got to physically remove the offending organism," Price says.

One effective, low-tech way is to scrape the mouth with a toothbrush or tongue scraper, a piece of metal that Price likens to an Emory board. "In some countries, tongue scraping is considered part of everyday hygiene," Price tells WebMD.

He also recommends using toothpaste that contains an antibacterial agent, such as chlorine dioxide.

Flossing regularly to remove old food lodged between teeth is another must. It doesn't smell good in the Dumpster; nor does it smell good in your mouth.

Maintaining an adequate amount of moisture in the mouth also helps. Price suggests using a humidifier in the winter, drinking adequate amounts of water throughout the day, or munching on an apple, a solution he calls "better than a Bianca blast." The less moisture in the mouth, Price explains, the more bad-smelling vapors the bacteria release into the mouth.

Also, consider what you put in your mouth. "If it smells going in, it's probably going to smell going out," Price says. Prime offenders include garlic, tobacco, and onions.

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5

Today on WebMD

Woman eating pizza
How it starts, and how to stop it.
man with indigestion
Get lifestyle and diet tips.
 
woman shopping for heartburn relief
Medication options.
man with heartburn
Symptoms of both.
 
digestive health
Slideshow
Heartburn or Heart Attack
Article
 
heartburn
Article
Top 10 Heartburn Foods
Video
 
Is it Heartburn or Gerd
Video
digestive myths
Slideshow
 
Extreme Eats
Slideshow
graphic of esophageal area
Article