How do you tell someone he/she has a bad breath?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by crazycat, Jul 31, 2009.

  1. crazycat macrumors 65816

    crazycat

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2005
    #1
    You have a friend who has bad breath, what is the best way to tell him or her so?
     
  2. Corrosive vinyl macrumors 6502

    Corrosive vinyl

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2006
    #2
    how well do you know this friend? That depends on how blunt you can be about it.
     
  3. mscriv macrumors 601

    mscriv

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2008
    Location:
    Dallas, Texas
    #3
    "Dude, your breath is rank! As a friend I suggest you do something about it. Mints, gum, brushing after every meal, I don't know what would work best for you, but something needs to be done."

    Remember, for some people bad breath can be a medical condition and they need to seek professional support for treatment options. But, if your friend just has bad hygiene then just be straight with them. That's what friends are for. :)

    Edit: It's kinda funny your asking this question with what you've put in your signature line.
     
  4. jzuena macrumors 6502a

    jzuena

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2007
    Location:
    Lexington, MA, USA
    #4
    In my pocket there's a whole thing of Tic-Tacs. Take as many as you like, please.

    :D
     
  5. Signal-11 macrumors 65816

    Signal-11

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2008
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    2nd Star to the Right
    #5
    Offer gum and/or breath mints. When someone does this to me, I assume it might be because my breath smells that day or something.
     
  6. Dagless macrumors Core

    Dagless

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2005
    Location:
    Fighting to stay in the EU
    #6
    "Hey I bet you can't chew 5 sticks of gum at once, ready GO"
     
  7. madog macrumors 65816

    madog

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2004
    Location:
    Korova Milkbar
    #7
    "Hey, man. I just got this great new gum. You should try it." or some variation thereof.
     
  8. timerollson macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2005
    Location:
    heretothere
    #8
    • Gag slightly when he or she begins to speak.
    • Wear a swine flu mask in their presence.
    • Start telling "Your breath is so stank..." jokes.
     
  9. psycoswimmer macrumors 65816

    psycoswimmer

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2006
    Location:
    USA
    #9
    Put mints in their mailbox, anonymously of course.
     
  10. Whack A Mac macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2009
    #10
    Do not offer mints/gum. Although they will get the hint, every time in the future they are innocently offered minty products they will assume the worst. Subtlety can lead to over-analyzation and neuroticism.

    ^ Exhibit A. Case in point.

    Be frank with them, but not too serious. And have a new subject to change to so it doesn't get awkward.
     
  11. Signal-11 macrumors 65816

    Signal-11

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2008
    Location:
    2nd Star to the Right
    #11
    Meh, I don't mind. I've never been a guy who keeps regular hours so sometimes, I forget to brush my teeth. So when someone offers me breath mints or gum, I just flat out ask, "Is that your way of telling me my breath smells? It's okay if is."
     
  12. Whack A Mac macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2009
    #12
    So it still comes down to telling and not alluding to, hinting or suggesting.
     
  13. DiamondMac macrumors 68040

    DiamondMac

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2006
    Location:
    Washington, D.C.
    #13
    EMail them from a secret account?

    I have a work friend do this to another in the office and it worked.

    Seems childish but I have told another friend this exact thing and to this day the person is ticked off about it.
     
  14. RITZFit macrumors 65816

    RITZFit

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2007
    Location:
    In my Corner
    #14
    I just offer them some gum and take a stick myself for the heck of it.
     
  15. velocityg4 macrumors 68040

    velocityg4

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2004
    Location:
    Georgia
    #15
    If you jokingly exchange insults like I do with my friends. "You're breath stinks. Did you eat something that's rotting." Or something along those lines.

    If you tip toe around the issue you miss one an opportunity of friendship. The ability to directly insult without offending.:D
     
  16. Whack A Mac macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2009
    #16
    Yes, any light-hearted way to tell someone works fine.

    A note on gum:
    • Gum does not solve the problem, which we must assume is chronic if the OP has ventured onto a messageboard to seek advice
    • Offering gum therefore can only be seen as a subtle way of insinuating that there is a problem
    • This relies on the person in question 'getting it'
    • Once they have 'got' the subtle message, they might start looking for other 'signals' in life. Is he looking at me funny? Did that guy cover his nose when I spoke to him? Why do people avoid me when I wear the color blue? etc.
    • This could lead to all sorts of problems, and as we don't know the person in question, this risk must be addressed

    Tell them.
     
  17. cocky jeremy macrumors 68040

    cocky jeremy

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    Jul 12, 2008
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    Columbus, OH
  18. toolbox macrumors 68020

    toolbox

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    Oct 6, 2007
    Location:
    Australia (WA)
    #18
    LoL that made be laugh.
     
  19. Melrose Suspended

    Melrose

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2007
    #19
    well said. I try to be straight up with people, since that's what I'd appreciate in return. That way, also, there's no confusion.

    I knew this German chap (my dad's age or better) and he had just about the worst breath you've ever experienced. People offered him mints all the time, and he never got the hint (declining the mints, even repeatedly). One day there were a few of us out somewhere and he comes out the store with a pack of gum and unwraps several pieces and puts them in his mouth, saying that he's heard people think his breath is bad. He died a few hours later of an aneurism. He was funny to be around (in small doses) and it's ironic the day he caught on was the day he died. True story.
     

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