A workmate recently shared with me her problem; she has a friend who has bad breathe and she is still puzzled on how to let her know about it. Telling a friend or acquaintance that they have bad breath can be an awkward and difficult thing to do. It can be difficult to know how to approach the subject without hurting their feelings, but you also want to be honest and help them out. Whether or not they are aware of their problematic odour, there are ways to inoffensively let someone know that they have bad breath.
With a little bit of luck and a pinch of Smart Mouth, it’s possible to confront a friend or partner about their problem without being offensive. He or she may be slightly embarrassed at first, but he or she will be very thankful in the long run. Bad breath may be an embarrassing problem, but there’s no reason not to break the news gently and respectfully. The truth is that nobody wants to be the bearer of bad news. So, you only have to be careful and sensitive to their feelings as you choose the channel to use because embarrassment may result into anger.
One of the quickest and commonest ways is to pretend that you also have bad breath. Experience has shown that the classic way to hint at a particular problem is to act as if you have the problem yourself. This is a great way to bring up the topic of bad breath to someone, especially to a person that you are not very close with, because it is a non-confrontational way to make them think about their own breath. Quite often you can start the conversation with some statements such as “I’m going to go grab some water, I feel like my breath is terrible.” or “Can you smell my breath? I feel like it’s noticeable.”
It has also been proved that offering your friend some chewing gum or a breath mint is a casual way of approaching the situation. With this approach, you are not singling them out or making them feel awkward in any way. You may want to consider the fact that your friend may already be aware of the issue and might be relieved to have the offer.
When all options appear to have failed, the direct approach comes in as last resort. Keep in mind that this approach works best if you already have some level of friendship established with this person. If you want to be direct, you can do so in a few different ways. You could simply tell them directly to their face, which is okay if there are no other bystanders or friends around to judge and make jokes. Another way to tell them directly would be to send a simple text message. You never know whether someone is aware of how bad their breath is, which is why gentle reminders are so important.
For people who understand, they will simply appreciate your help and they are likely to change for the better. If they were not brushing their teeth twice a day and flossing regularly they are likely to start doing so because this is the number one defense against cavities and gingivitis. Lets help each other before our close friends are humiliated by people who are ready to make fun out of people’s problems.