Have you ever worried when you’re conversing with someone who suddenly moves further back or recommends their favorite mouthwash out of the blue? This might make you concerned about whether you have bad breath, and that feels awful.
Halitosis is another name for bad breath, but whatever you call it, if you’re dealing with it, you want to remedy the situation as quickly as possible!
The Expressions in Dentistry care team is happy to talk to you about the causes of bad breath (and they’ll be frank with you if you ask them to check your breath while you’re here for a visit) and how to mitigate it. We offer routine care and cleaning services for patients, innovative cosmetic dentistry, care for dental emergencies, and much more. We’re happy to partner with you to achieve your best smile — and healthiest mouth.
The basics on bad breath
We know it’s embarrassing to think you have bad breath, but its presence may also be saying something important about your oral health.
Poor dental hygiene is a major cause of bad breath, since failing to brush and floss as often or thoroughly as you should means that tiny food particles remain in your mouth and fester, which can lead to periodontitis (gum disease) when plaque buildup becomes severe.
Your tongue can also be a culprit, because it can trap bacteria, which accounts for the bad odor too. Additionally, if you wear dentures but don’t clean them often enough or they don’t fit correctly, bad breath is bound to emerge as well.
Other causes of bad breath include:
- Bacteria from food that remains in your mouth, but hasn’t yet become plaque
- When garlic, onions, and some spices get into the bloodstream and lungs after digestion
- Tobacco products cause bad breath and and gum disease, which impacts your breath
- Certain medications
- Dry mouth, since saliva cleanses the mouth, and medications that cause dry mouth
- Nose, sinus, and throat infections and inflammation
Conditions like metabolic disorders and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) also contribute to bad breath.
Effective solutions for bad breath
Fortunately, you can take steps to mitigate your bad breath problem if you've been suffering from it.
First, make sure that you’re keeping your teeth scrupulously clean by brushing and flossing — correctly — each and every day. Using mouthwash can also help. Talk to your dentist if you’ve noticed dry mouth symptoms, and ask your doctor about whether you’re on any medications known to cause bad breath. Know, too, that sleep apnea has been associated with bad breath.
Take it easy eating garlic, onions, and peppers, dial back the spices when you cook, and get any sinus or chronic throat issues checked out. It’s also important to stay hydrated with water as opposed to coffee and alcohol, which both contribute to dry mouth. Finally, if you smoke or chew tobacco, quit promptly!
Your dentist can help you find the cause if you’ve been living with bad breath, get rid of it, and enjoy life social events without worry again. Call us at 916-983-6767 to set up a consultation with a member of the Expressions in Dentistry team, or use our convenient online booking tool. Imagine life without the worry of bad breath — we can guarantee it will be excellent!