The Social Consequences of
Bad Breath and Halitosis

When you have bad breath, every contact with another human being is a potential run-in with your judge, jury, and executioner. A poor first impression is all the evidence needed. It's unfortunate that our society is so quick to judge, but it is what it is. So the question is what kind of impact is that judgement having on you.

Have you ever wondered whether or not
your breath has affected you professionally?

Think about it for a minute. Suppose you and a co-worker are competing for the same position, and you have similar qualifications, comparable experience, and approximately the same amount of time in your current positions. Your co-worker always has fresh breath. However, from time to time, yours hasn't been so good. Is it possible that you'll lose out to your co-worker because of your breath? You'd better believe it. It happens all the time.

Looking for a new job?

Before the interview, you'd better make sure your breath is beyond reproach. Otherwise, the job is going to go to someone else. Why? Well... One of the things a prospective employer will want to gauge is your potential fit with their team. It won't matter if you are without a doubt the most technically qualified applicant for the position if nobody can stand to be near you because you have bad breath. You will not be judged to be a good fit and the position will go to someone who perhaps is less qualified but who IS a good fit. And why not?

Why would any employer want to hire someone who's going to annoy the current staff? You may even be perceived by a prospective employer as someone who doesn't exercise proper personal hygiene, or worse yet, as someone with low self-esteem. Now, as you and I both know, you can practice excellent oral hygiene and still have a problem. But the prospective employer isn't going to see it that way.

Alright, enough about work... Let's change the subject.

So, how's your social life?I hope you're in a secure relationship with a partner who understands what you're going through and is willing to stand by you until the problem's been resolved. At least, that's how it would be in a perfect world.

But if you're in the process of looking for someone with whom you can share your life, once again, you'd best make sure your breath is beyond reproach. After all, is the dating process really that much different from the job interview process? Sure, it's less formal, but the goals are similar. Your prospective partner will be looking to see if you're a good fit for the "team" (friends & relatives) and if you have the necessary "skills" (grooming, sense of humor, affectionate and attentive). If you show up with bad breath at any time during this process, a good fit and good skills won't be able to save you.

So how do you get on track and stay on track? What's the solution to the problem of bad breath? I can answer that in three words: Prevention, Prevention, Prevention. Find a good oral hygiene regimen that works for you... Get on it and stay on it. If you need some help, my Fourteen Guidelines for Prevention will give you plenty of tips to help you improve your current oral hygiene regimen or start building a good one from scratch.

Either way, get started now and never quit. If you do, I think you'll find that the only social consequences in your life will be good ones.


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