We all hate bad breath, aka halitosis. It’s annoying, offputting, and of course, embarrassing. But, in terms of your oral health, bad breath can be a symptom of more significant problems. Especially if there is a sudden, unexplained change, it could be a sign of something wrong. So, don’t just accept the condition. Choose to correct the problem!
It’s common to have bad “morning” breath because that’s when bacteria in the mouth are most active. Saliva production decreases during sleep, and bacteria take full advantage. That’s why dentists recommend brushing before bedtime, as well as first thing in the morning.
However, when halitosis persists throughout the day, even with proper brushing and flossing, that is not normal.
Possible Causes Of Bad Breath Include:
- Food – Eating fragrant foods such as garlic or onions is sure to make your breath smell, but this is temporary and not health-related.
- Dry Mouth – Saliva coats the interior of the mouth, helping remove food debris and inhibit bacteria growth. So, when chronic dry mouth occurs, bad breath is likely to follow.
- Tobacco – Smoking or chewing tobacco can have numerous side effects, including an unpleasant smell. On top of the fragrance, tobacco use can also decrease saliva production, which leads to dry mouth and… more bad breath.
- Periodontal Disease – unaddressed gum disease is a definitive source. Infection in gum tissue can create gaseous sulfur compounds, known for their strong scent.
- Tooth Decay – similarly, tooth decay is the result of numerous bacteria breaking down your teeth. So there’s no wonder why unaddressed cavities can lead to halitosis.
- Improper Hygiene – Most cases of bad breath, especially minor problems, can be traced back to inadequate oral hygiene. Brush and floss thoroughly to ensure all food debris is cleared from your teeth. And for those who wear dentures, retainers, mouthguards, or other oral appliances, make sure proper cleaning solutions are utilized. These surfaces are often breeding grounds for bacteria to thrive.
- Medications – Check all medications you may be taking and note their side effects. Many can unintentionally induce dry mouth. This, in turn, leads to bad breath.
If you have questions or concerns regarding halitosis, please don’t hesitate to contact us!