How to Tell Somebody They Have Bad Breath

Do you know somebody who has bad breath all the time? Maybe it’s a co-worker or a classmate. Or perhaps it’s a friend or a member of your own family.

When people have chronic bad breath, they usually don’t realize it themselves. And too often, the people who are close to them are too embarrassed to tell them. Or perhaps they don’t want to hurt their feelings. So the person with the awful breath continues to offend others in blissful ignorance.

It’s Your Duty to Tell Them

Strangers with bad breath is one thing. But when it’s somebody you care about, it’s your duty to tell them about their bad breath. You wouldn’t want them to keep it from you if you had bad breath all the time, would you?

Telling somebody that they have offensive breath falls into the category of “tough love”. It’s not easy. Nobody wants to do it. But it’s essential if you want them to be happy in the long run.

The best approach is to be direct. Being coy or indirect will only confuse people. It’s like ripping off a bandage. The faster you do it, the quicker you can get past the hardest part.

Offer Solutions

It’s not enough to simply tell somebody their breath is bad. You also need to offer immediate solutions so they can fix the problem.

Tell them that the best way to get rid of bad breath is to brush their teeth at least twice daily, preferably in the morning and again at night before they go to bed. Use a good quality mouthwash to rinse out their mouth and gargle every time they brush. And, most importantly, to floss between their teeth daily.

Another solution is for them to make an appointment to see their dentist. If there is an underlying problem that is causing their bad breath — such as tooth decay or gum disease — their dentist can address it, resolve it, and help eliminate their breath odor.