We have all had it, that embarrassing moment when you realize that you have bad breath. Maybe it was the garlicky pasta you had for lunch coming back to haunt you. The causes of bad breath are varied and range from easily managed to more complex. Understanding the causes of bad breath, clinically known as halitosis will help you manage this embarrassing problem and ensure that you are doing all you can to prevent it.
The Primary Causes of Bad Breath
Bad breath is most commonly caused by one of three things
Your personal oral hygiene plays an important role in the cause of bad breath. If you brush in a hurry and forget to floss, bacteria which reside in the mouth collect and form plaque on the surfaces of your teeth and at the gumline. The bacteria in plaque give off an odor which causes bad breath. Maintaining good dental hygiene every day will help prevent tooth decay and gum disease in addition to preventing bad breath.
The foods we eat can be the stinky culprits. Garlic and onions are well known causes for halitosis. During digestion, the chemical components of the foods we eat are absorbed into the bloodstream and therefore into your lungs. As you exhale, the chemicals are released into the air. Diets high in sugars and protein can also have a similar effect.
Certain health conditions can cause bad breath as well. Infections in the mouth, sinuses, lungs and other respiratory conditions can cause bad breath. Digestive diseases such as acid reflux can also contribute to the problem. Certain medications and health conditions can cause dry mouth. Since saliva is a natural preventive for bad breath, people with dry mouth often exhibit halitosis.
What Can You Do To Prevent and Treat Bad Breath
Maintain good dental hygiene
See your dentist and dental hygienist regularly
Maintain a healthy diet and drink plenty of water
Use sugar-free gum or mints to help with dry mouth.Artificial saliva products can also help.
Talk to your dentist about the possible causes of bad breath.Your dentist can help if the cause is due to an oral condition.If the cause is systemic, you should see your physician.
Maintaining good dental hygiene is the number one preventive treatment for bad breath. Don’t forget to brush your tongue! Bacteria on the tongue is a well-known cause of halitosis. Smoking and tobacco use make your breath smell bad. See your dentist regularly for professional cleanings and detection of odor causing problems like tooth decay and gum disease. Talk to Dr. Babaloui about products which are available to help you manage a chronic halitosis problem.