We all have bad breath every once in a while. Sometimes it comes from eating something that smells strong, like garlic or onions; alternatively, you may be dehydrated, ill, or just woken up. But you can feel self-conscious and embarrassed if your breath smells even after brushing your teeth.
Sucking mints or chewing gum can disguise the problem for a while, but the underlying cause is probably still there. Pretty soon, your bad breath will reappear.
Often, bad breath is a sign of a dental issue or another health concern. In these cases, it’s best to have your teeth and gums checked by a dentist to rule out decay or disease.
This brief guide discusses the common causes of bad breath while suggesting tips for preventing or relieving halitosis.
If you have bad breath, there could be several causes.
Dry mouth: Saliva helps sweep away odour-causing bacteria from your mouth. If you have a dry mouth, it means you’re not producing enough saliva for the task.
Food and drink: Certain spices and pungent foods like garlic will leave lingering odours. Drinking too much coffee can dehydrate you, leaving you with a dry mouth and bad breath. When you consume alcohol, your body converts it into acid, which can cause unwelcome smells.
Smoking and vaping: Nicotine consumption affects saliva production, leaving you with a dry mouth and bad breath. Added to this, smoking tobacco leaves lingering smells in your mouth.
Morning breath: During the night, your saliva production drops, leaving you with a dry mouth. Additionally, if you sleep with your mouth open, it’s likely that your mouth will become even drier.
Poor portal hygiene: If you don’t brush your teeth, bacteria can build up in your mouth, along with decaying food particles. This can lead to foul-smelling odours.
Tooth decay: As plaque bacteria create cavities on your teeth, it often causes bad breath.
Gum Disease: Gingivitis or periodontitis develop when tartar builds along the edge of your gums. Bad breath can occur along with several other symptoms.
Dental infections: If you have a dental infection, it can cause swelling and abscess. Bad breath often comes alongside infected teeth.
Other medical conditions: Many health issues can cause bad breath, including respiratory infections, asthma, sinus problems, cystic fibrosis, diabetes, heartburn, indigestion, acid reflux, stomach problems, liver damage, kidney problems, and more.
Medication: Dry mouth is a common side effect of many medications.
Sometimes it’s easy to identify the cause of your bad breath and make adjustments to your lifestyle. For instance, you may find quitting smoking, drinking less coffee, or sipping water frequently helps.
If your bad breath doesn’t appear to be caused by your lifestyle, you should make an appointment for a dental checkup.
During your checkup, we’ll look for the early signs of tooth decay, gum disease, and infection. When we identify the contributing factors, we’ll recommend adjustments to your care routine or essential treatments.
Booking a hygiene appointment can also help you identify and combat the potential causes.
If your bad breath is not a dental issue, visit your GP for a checkup.
Here are some of the best ways to avoid bad breath:
If you’re concerned about bad breath, we can help. Call today to book a routine checkup, or come and see us for a hygiene appointment.Back to Blog
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