Millions of Americans have offensive breath and most of them are unaware of it. Bad breath, or halitosis, is not only a nuisance to those in close proximity to you, but also detrimental to your health. Halitosis can be due to a simple problem such as the foods you eat or it could be a sign of a serious health issue.
What Causes Bad Breath?
There are many causes for this condition. One of the most common causes is the buildup of germs and bacteria on the back of the tongue. As the bacteria interacts with the amino acids in food debris, they produce smelly sulfur compounds. Cleaning the back of your tongue when you brush and floss can help keep this problem at a minimum. There are also many other reasons your breath can smell bad:
- Strong-smelling foods – All the foods you eat are absorbed into your bloodstream. Foods such as garlic and onion smell strong and the odor can linger as long as it is in your body.
- Poor oral hygiene – Halitosis develops when you do not brush and floss your teeth regularly. Food debris collects around the teeth, gums and tongue and can rot. Not only does it leave a bad taste in your mouth, it also causes your breath to smell.
- Dirty dentures – Dentures need to be cleaned properly, otherwise they collect bacteria, and fungi can begin to grow on them. Food particles can also stick to them and the result is bad breath.
- Periodontal disease – Advanced gum disease can leave a bad taste in your mouth along with bad smelling breath. This is a condition that needs to be addressed as soon as possible.
- Using tobacco products – All types of tobacco products can cause halitosis. Besides bad breath, they also put you at a higher risk for several serious diseases.
- A health condition – If your dentist cannot find an oral health cause for your halitosis, you should check in with your primary care physician. Your bad breath could indicate an infection in your respiratory system, a gastrointestinal disorder, a problem with your liver or kidney or diabetes.
If you have not had someone mention your breath to you, your dentist may mention it at your regular dental exam and look for a cause. Your mouth will be checked to determine if the cause is oral. If it is not, you will be advised to see your doctor.
The way in which your halitosis is treated depends on the cause of the problem. If it is oral hygiene, you may need instruction on how to brush and floss correctly. If dirty dentures are to blame, your dentist will suggest cleaning methods to keep them smelling fresh. Gum disease will need to be treated appropriately.
Since the cause of this condition could be serious, it is important to have it diagnosed and find the cause so it can be addressed. At Feather Touch Dental Care, we care about your oral health. Schedule an appointment with us for a thorough oral examination.
Posted on Behalf of Feather Touch Dental Care