Let’s face it. Bad breath happens. Has someone offered you a mint or gum? Have you ever gotten that not-so-fresh feeling in your mouth? Chances are you were experiencing bad breath, and you’re not alone. Studies show that 50 percent of adults have had bad breath, or halitosis, at some point in their lives. Find out the SIX major causes of bad breath AND the SIX best ways to ensure you don’t get bad breath in the future.
Six Main Causes of Bad Breath
Bad breath can happen anytime thanks to the hundreds of types of bad breath-causing bacteria that naturally lives in your mouth. Your mouth also acts like a natural hothouse that allows these bacteria to grow. When you eat, bacteria feed on the food left in your mouth and leaves a foul-smelling waste product behind.
Feeling parched? Your mouth might not be making enough saliva. Saliva is important because it works around the clock to wash out your mouth. If you don’t have enough, your mouth isn’t being cleaned as much as it should be. Dry mouth can be caused by certain medications, salivary gland problems or by simply breathing through your mouth.
Bad breath that just won’t go away or a constant bad taste in your mouth can be a warning sign of advanced gum disease, which is caused by bacteria found in plaque and tarter.
Garlic, onions, coffee… The list of breath-offending foods is long, and what you eat affects the air you exhale.
Smoking and Tobacco
Smoking stains your teeth, gives you bad breath and puts you at risk for a host of health problems. Tobacco reduces your ability to taste foods and the ability to fight infection, which subsequently tobacco users are more likely to suffer from gum disease. Since smoking also affects your sense of smell, smokers may not be aware of how their breath smells.
Mouth infections can cause bad breath. However, if your dentist has ruled out other causes and you brush and floss every day, your bad breath could be the result of another problem, such as a sinus condition, gastric reflux, diabetes, liver or kidney disease. In this case, see your healthcare provider.
Six Ways to Keep Bad Breath Away
Brush and Floss
Brush twice a day, floss, and use a waterpik if recommended, to get rid of all that bacteria that’s causing your bad breath.
Over-the-counter mouth rinses such as Listerine can be therapeutic and help fight bacteria and bad breath, in ADDITION to brushing and flossing, but do not replace brushing and flossing.
Clean Your Dentures
If you wear removable dentures, take them out at night, and clean them thoroughly before using them again the next morning.
Keep That Saliva Flowing
To get more saliva moving in your mouth, try eating healthy foods that require a lot of chewing, like carrots or apples. You can also try chewing sugar-free gum. Saliva stimulants are available such as Colgate Hydris mouth rinse, Biotene products, and Act Dry Mouth rinse to name a few options.
Giving up this dangerous habit is good for your body in many ways. Not only will you have better breath, but you’ll also have a better quality of life and add years to it immediately after quitting.
Visit Our Office Regularly
If you’re concerned about what’s causing your bad breath, make an appointment to see us. Please fill out the contact form on this page, or call 702.888.1266.
Regular checkups allow the Trobough Dental team to detect any problems such as gum disease or dry mouth and stop them before they become more serious. We look forward to seeing you in our office for your next cleaning and exam soon!