While this may seem like a silly subject, halitosis, also known as bad breath, can cause serious issues in your career.

Imagine this, after six months of trying, you finally land a meeting with a big-time executive to pitch them on something that would take your career to the next level. During your pitch, despite it being filled with tons of value, there’s only one thing that the executive will focus on – your breath.

At the end of the 30-minute meeting, he quickly excuses you or pretends he has a phone call to take. You sit there, wondering what you did wrong. You review everything, ask colleagues for their opinion on the pitch, see if there were any stains on your shirt, and go over the scenario repeatedly in your head to see if you missed something that might have turned him off. Nothing.

You have no idea what went wrong, and more importantly, nothing to learn from.

In a nutshell, bad breath strips you of your ability to communicate effectively (at close range). In a world where communication is everything, this could be disastrous in the long run. People will grow reluctant to talk to you, and when they do talk to you, you’ll struggle to keep their attention. If you struggle with bad breath, it may be hurting your career more than you realize.

There are many possible causes of bad breath. According to the Mayo Clinic, bad breath can be caused by the following:

  • Food
  • Tobacco products
  • Poor dental hygiene
  • Dry mouth
  • Medications
  • Infections in your mouth

Unfortunately, some of these causes don’t have easy solutions. However, the most common cause of halitosis is bad oral hygiene. So be sure to brush your teeth and floss regularly. If you are especially prone to aggressive bacteria growth, consider using mouthwash in the middle of the day in between brushing your teeth.

Additionally, you may want to consider a natural mouthwash brand instead of synthetic. Synthetic mouthwash that includes alcohol can cause or worsen dry mouth, which is another cause of halitosis. So although it’ll kill the smelly bacteria and get rid of your bad breath instantly, it’s more likely to be an ongoing thing and require you to use more and more mouthwash. It’s a vicious cycle. 

Rest assured that around 25% of the population suffers from bad breath, and there are many treatments available for different scenarios.