3 Things You Should Know About Bad Breath
Do you have bad breath? You may not always be aware that your breath has an unpleasant odor. But other people may notice and let you know. It may be subtle – a step away from you as you speak – or a direct complaint that your breath is bad.
Otherwise known as halitosis, bad breath can be a relatively normal, but temporary, condition or a symptom of a more serious condition. Here are three things you should know:
1. Something in the mouth causes most instances of bad breath.
Millions of bacteria live in your mouth, thriving in the moist, warm condition. One of the most common examples of halitosis is “morning mouth” which is caused by the slowdown of saliva production while you are sleeping. During the day saliva washes away food and decay; at night bacteria feed on dead cells and produce odors. That’s why a familiar remedy for “morning mouth” is a cleansing with water, mouthwash, or your first glass of juice. Otherwise, it disappears with the first teeth brushing of the day.
2. Poor oral hygiene contributes to bad breath.
Without regular and frequent brushing and flossing, bits of food stuck between the teeth will decay and cause a foul odor. Over time, the neglect can lead to periodontal (gum) disease, which is also a source of bad breath. If your problem is poor dental hygiene, you’ll see improvement quickly. A dental exam and thorough professional cleaning at your family dental care practice, combined with regular brushing and flossing, will freshen your mouth right away. Another way to combat bad breath is to drink enough water every day to help your body make saliva. Swishing your mouth with water can loosen bits of food. If gum disease or tooth abscess is the cause of your bad breath, proper dental treatment is an immediate cure. There is no substitute for dental care.
3. Certain medical conditions cause bad breath.
Infections in the mouth, including some cavities; respiratory infections like sinusitis; and diseases such as diabetes and kidney disease are all linked to bad breath. Sometimes bad breath can be a sign that a medical condition needs attention right away. If your bad breath persists in spite of a healthy diet and good oral hygiene, you should contact your dentist or physician.
If you have bad breath that is persistent – not “morning mouth,” it may be a problem of poor dental hygiene. Why not contact my office to schedule a dental exam? With our initial consultation we can get started on your plan for a refreshed and healthy mouth.
Dr. Nisham Halim