DENTISTRY BLOG

Causes & Treatments for Bad Breath

Halitosis, or bad breath, is more common than many people realize. Still, you do not want to be the source of someone’s nasal distaste. Because there are so many different reasons for bad breath, it is not always easy to pinpoint the cause. However, bad breath can sometimes signify a more serious health issue.

Below you will find 8 of the most common causes of bad breath. As you read through this list, consider your own habits. Could you have bad breath and not even realize it? Luckily for you, we will follow each item in this list with some basic advice on how to avoid halitosis. Be confident in your smile and all that goes with it.

Common Causes for Bad Breath

1. Poor Oral Hygiene
This may seem obvious, but sometimes your mouth is just a little below cleanliness standards. Maybe you missed brushing your teeth this morning or have fallen out of your flossing habit. Whatever the reason, make sure to recommit to a daily oral care routine.

Brush in the morning and at night, making sure to get a full two minutes in each time. Flossing also helps minimize the food bits and bacteria that cause bad breath. As your tongue is one of the main causes of bad breath, make a point to clean it often. This is easiest through the use of a tongue scraper. Talk to your dentist about where to obtain one.

Keeping your bi-annual dental cleaning appointments will decrease the factors that contribute to bad breath. Remember to replace your toothbrush every few months to keep it free of bacteria.

2. Dry Mouth
Although this condition can be chronic and a result of other medical issues, your mouth can become dry at any time. Many experience the dreaded “morning breath” as a result of reduced saliva production during the night. Saliva is your body’s natural cleansing solution, so you will experience smelly breath after a night of open-mouthed sleeping.

Be sure to brush and floss before bed, and breathe through your nose to keep up saliva production as much as possible. If you have chronic dry mouth, try chewing some sugar-free gum to stimulate saliva production.

3. Periodontal Disease
Also known as gum disease, this condition happens when you develop an infection in your gums. It often occurs when patients fail to brush or floss often enough, but other factors can play a role in susceptibility. Make sure you are brushing and flossing as you should. Consult your dentist if you experience persistent bloody or swollen gums.

4. Dentures
Just like teeth, dentures require regular cleaning and maintenance. If you do not clean your dentures often enough, they can develop an unpleasant odor that also affects your breath. Talk to your dentist about best cleaning practices and do not neglect them. You should also still visit your dentist regularly to check the health of your gums. Even if you do not have any original teeth, your mouth still needs constant care.

5. Diet
Chances are, if it smelled going in, it will smell coming out. Your body absorbs plant by-products into the bloodstream. This causes you to breathe the odours out of your lungs 3-4 hours after eating. While mints, gum, and brushing can help to mask this result, there is little you can do but wait it out. Or avoid eating smelly foods like garlic and onions in the first place.

Smelly foods aside, there are certain types of foods that can promote bad breath. These include dairy, high-fat and spicy foods, meat and sugar. Keep in mind that high-protein diets can also cause bad breath. If you maintain a high-protein diet, you can develop a build-up of ketones, which contribute to bad breath. Avoid this condition by eating a balanced diet with plenty of nutrient-rich carbohydrates. These include fresh fruits, vegetables and whole grains.

6. Excess Mucous
Whether you are suffering from a sinus infection or allergies, mucous intensifies bad breath. These conditions also often result in a post-nasal drip, which can also make your breath more foul than usual. Drink plenty of water and blow your nose often to minimize the effects.

7. Smoking
In addition to all the other health issues that accompany smoking, there is bad breath. Smoking leaves behind a distinct odour but also affects the normal flow of saliva in the mouth. Any type of mouth dryness results in bad breath because saliva helps keep clear out odour-causing bacteria. Smoking is also known to cause oral cancer. If you want to quit smoking, seek help.

8. Untreated Medical Conditions
Perhaps one of the lesser known causes of bad breath, untreated medical conditions are often more serious. Our bodies react in interesting ways when something is not working properly and one way is to develop bad breath. The medical conditions that can contribute to bad breath include:

  • Respiratory infection
  • Gastrointestinal disorder
  • Chronic sinus infections
  • Chronic bronchitis
  • Diabetes
  • Pneumonia

This list covers some of the most common medical conditions that result in bad breath. If you have tried all the regular remedies to cure your bad breath and are not seeing results, consult our helpful staff at Woodcreek Dental Care. They will be able to tell if the cause is oral or otherwise.

Call us today to experience our professional cosmetic and sedation dental care.

     

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