The love/hate relationship – Arifa Sultana

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  Posted by: Dental Design      7th February 2018

A love/hate relationship can occur between two people that deep down have strong feelings for each other. Instead of expressing their emotions openly they may bicker or pretend they don’t care, but subconsciously, they are attracted to each other and seek the other’s approval. In Romeo and Juliet, Shakespeare expresses this contradiction of feelings by using phrases such as “O brawling love” and “O loving hate.” Sigmund Freud also borrowed the term ‘ambivalence’ to indicate the presence of both love and hate towards the same object.

Certainly, most people have experienced these conflicting feelings at some point in their lives, whether it is the fascination with something that is macabre or the relationship that often exists between siblings. In fact, recent research reveals that the emotions of love and hate can co-exist and, most interestingly, human intuition allows us to possess both positive and negative feelings even towards significant individuals such as a partner.[1]

It is possible to trust, admire, like or love a person but at times, that same individual can prompt feelings of fear, disrespect, dislike and even hate. This can be true of a lot of couples in a long-term relationship, as they may argue long and hard but within hours they are making up. No matter how much they may dislike each other at times, they stay together often inhibiting negative evaluations of their partners, accepting their behaviour and transforming their partner’s faults into virtues.[2]

Of course, there are certain things that should not be tolerated such as emotional, verbal or physical abuse as well as other undesirable tendencies, including jealousy, controlling behaviour or infidelity. Other things that people secretly hate about their partners include: flirting, swearing, vanity, lack of ambition, untidiness, taking too many selfies or constantly playing video games. However, there are some problems, which despite being very hard to live with, are often not addressed or dealt with properly by many couples. For example, a national poll of over 2000 UK adults reveals that a significant number of individuals refuse to seek professional help for medical issues, even though they have a negative impact on their relationships.[3]

Top of the list of issues is snoring. It has been suggested that as many as one in four people in England snore regularly[4] but 84% of sufferers have never sought help for the problem.3 The survey also revealed that 20 per cent of men in the UK have suffered from erectile dysfunction, but over half of sufferers ignore the condition. Over a quarter of British adults have smelly feet or bunions but a staggering 61 per cent leave these issues untreated. The figures are similar for the problem of flatulence, but most surprising is that a significant number of people suffer from unpleasant smelling breath yet 80 per cent of them do nothing about it.

Unfortunately, halitosis can put a strain on any relationship. It is a key factor at the start of a partnership and also in the maintenance of a long-term relationship. Equally, bringing up the subject of unpleasant breath, even with ones nearest and dearest, can be very difficult. It is frequently avoided until the condition becomes intolerable because halitosis can result in extreme embarrassment as well as avoidance, frustration, lack of intimacy, loss of self-esteem and also anger and depression.

Although common, waking up with smelly breath is not regarded as halitosis and most people experience some kind of transient unpleasant oral odour at some time. However, up to 50% of the general population have persistent or recurrent episodes of halitosis[5] and the source of 90 per cent of cases is the oral cavity.[6] Even in healthy individuals, the accumulation of food debris and the retention of dental bacterial plaque on the teeth and tongue can cause halitosis. Conditions such as tooth decay, periodontal disease, dry mouth, ill-fitting dental restorations or dentures can all contribute to oral malodour too. Yet, as dental professionals are well aware, they can all be exposed during a regular dental examination.

As well as identifying any contributory issues and planning treatment where appropriate, dental professionals can also help patients by educating and showing them how to carry out a thorough oral health routine. It is also a good idea to recommend CB12 mouthwash as an adjunct to brushing and interdental cleaning as it has been clinically proven to prevent unpleasant breath for up to 12 hours. [7] Its patented formula gets to the root cause of bad breath by targeting and neutralising the odorous volatile sulphur compounds (VSCs) that are mainly responsible for intra-oral halitosis5 and also by chemically binding to the tissues of the mouth CB12 provides long lasting effects and reassurance.

It seems that many people could be living in a love/hate relationship simply because they are too embarrassed to address a problem that can often be easily remedied. There really is no need for patients to live with an issue such as odorous breath or with their loved one’s frustration, negativity or intolerance. A good oral health routine and effective products can successfully address this common condition and make for a happier relationship too.


For more information about CB12 and how it could benefit your patients, please visit





[1] Zayas V et al. Love you? Hate you? Maybe it’s both: Evidence that significant others trigger bivalent-priming. Social Phychological and Personality Science 2015. 6(1) 56-64. [Accessed 21st August 2017]

[2] Murray S et al. A Smart Unconscious? Procedural Origins of Automatic Partner Attitudes in Marriage. J Exp Soc Psychol. 2010. 46(4): 650–656. [Accessed 21st August 2017]

[3] British Journal of Family Medicine. News 7th June 2017. Brits too embarrassed to seek help about common problems survey finds. Research by [Accessed 21st August 2017]

[4] NHS Choices. Snoring. [Accessed 21st August 2017]

[5] Porter S et al. Oral malodour (halitosis). BMJ. 2006; 333(7569): 632–635. [Accessed 21st August 2017]

[6] Aylıkcı BU et al. Halitosis: From diagnosis to management. J Nat Sci Biol Med. 2013; 4(1): 14–23. [Accessed 21st August 2017]

[7] Seemann R et al. Duration of effect of the mouthwash CB12 for the treatment of intra-oral halitosis: a double-blind, randomised, controlled trial. J. Breath Res. 10 (2016) 036002 [Accessed 21st August 2017]

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