What Causes Bad Breath?

Bad breath also, known as halitosis, can put you into an awkward situation and some times can cause anxiety. Primarily described as the bad smell coming from the mouth, it can be caused by various reason such as any food products, tobacco, poor dental hygiene, cavities in teeth, gum infection and much more. Bad breath is very common among adults. However, many people are not aware that they have bad breath or if they know they are not aware of the fact that what causes bad breath and how to get over it.

Halitosis may create a very bad impact on your social, personal, and professional life, which can lower down your confidence when interacting with other people. Not to be surprised that there are many companies selling gums, mints, mouthwash to fight bad breath. But are they provide a permanent solution? The answer is no because they don’t deal with the root of the problem and hence they only provide you a temporary solution.

Causes of Bad Breath

  1. Food: There are various reasons which can cause bad breath, but one of the common reason which can cause bad breath even in a healthy person is food. Some strong odor foods such as garlic and onion are known to cause bad breath. Besides garlic and onion, eating spicy foods, exotic spices (for instance curry), fish, acidic beverages such as coffee can leave an unpleasant smell in your mouth. Drinking alcohol can also have the same effect. Some of the odor are temporary and can be removed through brushing, flossing, or by mouthwash.
  2. Smoking or Chewing Tobacco: As we understand that smoking or chewing tobacco has a very bad impact not only in your oral health but also on your overall health, it also has a negative effect on your breath. These products contain chemicals which when you consume get stuck in your mouth, which eventually cause unpleasant mouth odor. Tobacco or any other smoking products cause gum disease, which results in bad breath.
  3. Poor Dental Hygiene: If you are not brushing your teeth regularly, then it is obvious that you can have bad breath. However, if you’re brushing your teeth regularly, but still facing bad breath issue, then you should start flossing every day. Flossing helps in removing the small particle of foods that get stuck in your teeth. If not removed daily, it will result in an unpleasant smell.
  4. Mouth Infections: Gum diseases, also known as periodontal disease, cavities, tooth decay, any surgical wounds after oral surgery can cause strong halitosis.
  5. Other Conditions Related to Mouth, Throat, and Nose: Bad breath can also be caused by infections in the nose, throat, or sinuses, which can contribute to postnasal drip.
  6. Dry Mouth: Also known as xerostomia, can also cause a strong unpleasant smell. Saliva helps in cleaning your mouth and remove the food particles that cause bad breath. Dry mouth can also be caused by salivary glands problems, connective tissue disorders, medications, or when you breathe through your mouth.
  7. Other Causes: There are various health issues which can cause bad breath such as oral cancer, liver failure, kidney issues, or metabolic disease.

What to do to prevent bad breath?

The first thing you can do is to identify what is the cause of your bad breath, such as are you eating certain foods, drinking alcohol, smoking, etc. If you identify the cause of halitosis, try to remove that by brushing and flossing your teeth daily, by keeping yourself hydrated, reduce the intake of food that causes bad breath. If you are unable to identify the cause, or after following proper oral hygiene, you still have bad breath, then you should book an appointment with your dentist. The cause of bad breath can be serious and require treatment such as gum disease or dry mouth. If not treated on time, may lead to loss of teeth or cause more issues.

How your dentist help you with halitosis?

● They professionally clean your mouth and gives you a solid foundation to start your new oral hygiene routine of brushing and flossing, including tongue cleaning.
● Suggest you some products to reduce dry mouth problems.
● Examine any potential gum disease and address it.
● If they doubt any sinus problem, they refer you to the nose, ear, or throat specialist.

Visit General Practitioner

If you do not find any of the cause in your dental examination, then you should visit your general practitioner. It is more likely that there are some health issues causing bad breath. Bad breath may cause due to some health issues such as diabetes, liver disease, kidney failure, and metabolic dysfunction.