What are the causes of bad breath and how to prevent it?

Bad Breath or Halitosis is mostly a result of poor hygiene and is completely treatable.

ENGLAND, October 22, 2012―Bad Breath, or halitosis, is a problem for many. It is normally due to the bacteria which have built up in your mouth.

Maintaining good oral hygiene can help you get rid of this problem. A few such habits include regular brushing, flossing and cleaning the tongue and regular mouthwashes. There are also less common reasons for bad breath. 

Many people who suffer with halitosis do not know it until someone points it out to them. Though there might be a lot of people who will be polite to you, the comments you might get can be disheartening. You can ask any person close to you for the right opinion. Alternatively you can approach a dentist.

There is also a test you can do yourself to check for halitosis. In this you need to lick your palm and leave it for a few seconds till the saliva dries. Smell it after that and if it smells bad then you are suffering from bad breath. One of the most common causes which leads to this is gum disease. Going to a dentist will help you to know the best ways in which you can solve this problem.

The main cause of this problem is the bacteria which reside in the mouth and this will also include the plaque and the other germs.

Morning bad breath is also a common problem in a lot of individuals. One of the very common reasons for this is that the mouth gets dried up during sleep. This is not much of a worry because when there is passing and flowing of saliva or after having breakfast it improves and does not lead to extreme smells.

Xerostomia, also known as dry mouth, is another cause of bad breath. When you have a dry mouth, the cleansing mechanism reduces and this also results in lower flow of saliva. Apart from the night sleep and the dryness in the mouth, the other things which contribute are dehydration, some diseases, side effects of drugs which you might be taking and many more. 

At times food, drinks and sweets you eat that might cause bad breath. When you drink alcohol or smoke there are chances that it may create a bad smell in your mouth and this will over a period of time cause bad breath.

Crash dieting or fasting might also contribute to bad breath. Some medicines can create bad breath. These medical issues will also include that of a blocked nose, sinus, chest pain, fever and others.

Considering all of these mentioned symptoms and causes along with a few others it is then very important that you start following a good oral hygiene regime. This is because it is within your means to eliminate bad oral odor which is present in your mouth. Teeth brushing, flossing and avoiding a few sugary items are some of the most important things which you should try to follow.

Brushing your teeth twice a day should be one of your basic habits. When you do so, always remember that you make use of a medium tufted brush and good toothpaste. Always make sure that the toothbrush which you buy should have a head which is small. This is because it is only then that it will be able to reach all the places in your mouth and you will also be able to easily clean your mouth without getting hurt. Be attentive to the teeth and the gums. Remove all the plaque and the other debris which is present in between the teeth using floss on a daily basis.

Also remember to floss. Flossing removes anything left in your mouth after brushing.  If you are not able to clean it by yourself then seek a dental professional’s advice. They will be able to guide you correctly on how you should clean and what you should do so that you do not have to worry about bad breath.

One of the best tips which you should try to follow is to cut down on sugary foods and drinks. Also limit the fizzy drinks and acidic juices. You can replace them with a glass of water. Cleaning the tongue is also something that is important as it can build up a layer of food debris and old skin.




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Dr. Priya Patel

I’m Dr. Priya Patel with over 10 years of experience in the dental industry and dental principal of Village Dental Practice in Stevenage, UK.  I qualified from Guy’s and St Thomas’ Dental Hospital in 2002 from London. I involve patients in their own treatment and enjoy seeing the improvement in a patient as their treatment progresses.

I also teach dentists at the Royal College of Surgeons in London who are completing postgraduate studies as well as overseas dentists who are studying for their equivalency exams.

You can follow Dr. Patel on Twitter at @dentistmum

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