Many people confuse breath mints with the popular breath fresheners available in stores. But, it’s important to know that these products are not the same as breath mints.
Breath mints are typically made from mint leaves (Mentha spicata), but they can also be made from other plants such as spearmint, water mint, or spearmint.
What are the symptoms?
Symptoms that you may experience when consuming breath mints include:
- Feeling full or bloated
- Having a gassy cough
- Having a watery or foul-smelling stool
- Having a burning sensation when you swallow
What are the causes?
There are various causes of diarrhea from breath mints, including:
- Citric acid
- Salicylic acid
How are they diagnosed?
Diarrhea can be difficult to diagnose because it can often be accompanied by other symptoms.
If you’re experiencing diarrhea symptoms, your doctor will take a thorough history and perform a physical exam. They may also ask you to provide a stool sample to test for the presence of blood.
Your doctor may also perform blood tests to look for bacteria that can cause diarrhea.
How are they treated?
For a short period of time, diarrhea from breath mints will typically resolve on its own.
However, if your diarrhea lasts more than one week, your doctor may recommend lifestyle changes, such as:
- Staying hydrated by drinking plenty of water
- Eating foods high in fiber.
- Limiting or avoiding foods that are high in fat and sugar, such as candy, soda, and other sugary foods
- Limiting or avoiding foods that are high in protein, such as meat and dairy products
If you have a significant amount of diarrhea, your doctor may recommend antibiotics such as amoxicillin or ciprofloxacin.
If you have chronic or severe diarrhea, your doctor may recommend that you stop taking your breath mints or switch to another type of breath mint.
What are the complications?
If you have diarrhea from an herbal breath mint, you should stop using it and seek medical attention right away.
The symptoms of diarrhea from a breath mint may not be severe, but they can be severe enough to cause dehydration.
If you experience severe diarrhea from a breath mint, it’s important to seek medical attention.
Diarrhea from breath mints can also cause dehydration, which can be fatal in some cases.
If you experience diarrhea and dehydration, you may need to give yourself fluids by mouth until your diarrhea resolves.
If you experience severe dehydration, you may need to be hospitalized.
How do I prevent it?
If you’re concerned about diarrhea from breath mints, you can try to avoid them.
You should avoid breath mints if you have a:
- Gastrointestinal disease
- A history of a previous infection
- Chronic diarrhea
- Chronic liver disease
If you’re concerned about having a bowel problem, you should see your doctor.
Your doctor can review your medical history and provide you with information about digestive problems.
It may also be helpful to keep a journal of your bowel habits. This can help you track how often you’re experiencing diarrhea.
What should I do next?
If you have diarrhea in addition to breath mints, you should stop using the product and talk to your doctor.
The symptoms of diarrhea from a breath mint can be severe, so it’s important to seek medical attention.
Your doctor can provide you with advice on what to do next. You may also want to talk to a dietitian who specializes in digestive conditions.
If your diarrhea from breath mints is severe, you may need to use a supplement to treat it.
If you experience diarrhea for more than one week, your doctor may recommend that you stop using breath mints.
Some people are concerned about the chemicals in breath mints. If you’re worried about the chemicals in breath mints, you can try to avoid them.
You can try to avoid them by:
- Avoiding products with artificial flavors, colors, or perfumes.
- Avoiding products with menthol.
- Avoiding products with chlorophyll.
If you’re concerned about the chemicals in breath mints, talk to your doctor. They can help you find an alternative to reduce your risk of these side effects.
When to see a doctor?
If you’re experiencing diarrhea and severe dehydration, you may need to be hospitalized.
You should seek immediate medical attention if you:
- Feel that your stool is loose and watery
- Have a fever
Your doctor will determine whether to prescribe antibiotics or other medication.
If you’re experiencing diarrhea and dehydration, you should avoid drinking water, fruit juices, and other fluids.
You should also avoid eating or drinking anything that triggers your diarrhea. This includes:
- Fried foods
- Dairy products
- Unripe fruits and vegetables
You may also want to avoid taking certain medications, such as:
- Antifungal medications
You should also try to avoid drinking alcohol. It can irritate your stomach.
If your diarrhea is severe, your doctor may recommend that you avoid drinking alcohol and eat a low-fat diet.
If you notice the symptoms of diarrhea, call your doctor.
If your diarrhea is severe, you should seek immediate medical attention.
If you’re dealing with diarrhea and severe dehydration, you may need to be admitted to the hospital.
If your symptoms resolve in a week or two, you should be able to return to your normal diet.
If your symptoms persist, you should see your doctor again.
If you’re having trouble eating or drinking, you should call your doctor.
You should also speak to a dietitian about your diarrhea.
Diarrhea from breath mints is usually short-term. However, it can be very uncomfortable and can cause people to lose their appetite.
If you’re having trouble with your appetite or diarrhea, try to avoid breath mints. If you’re still having trouble with your appetite or diarrhea after trying to avoid them, talk to your doctor.
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