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Writer David Feldman has dedicated himself to answering those niggling little questions that bother us all. Here is a selection of the most entertaining and enlightening questions from his new Reader’s Digest book, Imponderables.
Why do we wake up with such bad breath in the morning?
Most bad breath is caused by sulphur-bearing compounds in the mouth. How do they get there? And why is the problem worse in the morning?
Micro-organisms in the mouth aren’t fussy about what they eat. They attack:
• Food left in the mouth.
• Saliva found in the spaces between teeth, the gum and on the tongue.
• Dead tissue that is being shed by the mouth, gums and tongue.
The micro-organisms convert this food into amino acids and peptides, which in turn break down into compounds with a pungent sulphur odour.
Brushing the teeth helps rid the mouth of all of these food sources of the micro-organisms. But the best defence is a regular salivary flow, the type you get by talking, chewing or swallowing – things that most of us do only when awake.
Eliminating cavities is not the only reason to floss. The longer food particles stay in the mouth, the more fetid the breath will be, so those hours of sleep are the perfect breeding time for bacteria and a threat to sensitive noses everywhere.
When did wild poodles roam
the earth? Why do onions
make us cry? Imponderables
offers ingenious answers to
more than 400 of life’s most
bewildering and amusing questions.
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