Embarrassment Or Worse: What To Know About Bad Breath

While in some cases bad breath is just an annoyance, it can also be a hint of an underlying problem. There are some surprising illnesses and conditions that can cause bad breath, so read on to learn more about this problem and what to do about it.

What are the causes of bad breath?

There are really two types of bad breath; the temporary and the more permanent. If you've had garlic or onions for lunch, you can almost count on having a temporary case of bad breath. In most cases, a good brushing, mouthwash and some breath mints should handle it and keep your cubicle mates from avoiding you. Just be aware that if you are a smoker, it can be more challenging to get rid of bad breath, and the odor of cigarettes on your breath can be stubborn to get rid of.

If you seem to be experiencing more chronic problems with your breath, you may need to examine your oral hygiene more closely. Frequent brushing and flossing is not just common sense, but you must remove the bacteria from your mouth that contributes to bad breath. Food must be removed entirely to prevent the growth of bacteria. If you are lax in your cleansing habits, you may end up with a far worse problem than bad breath. Trapped food and the bacteria it creates can cause serious infections in your gums and jaw, leading to cavities and more. In extreme cases, loss of bone in the jaw could occur.

For those who suffer from a dry mouth, it is likely that bad breath is a fact of life. Saliva acts as the mouth's natural cleanser, constantly flushing bacteria and food particles from your mouth. Did you know that your mouth can harbor extremely dangerous forms of bacteria, such as staphylococcus, e coli, streptococcus and pneumonia? The elderly, those who wear dentures and those who take a lot of medicine are particularly vulnerable to dry mouth and the problems it can cause. Use special moisturizing washes and rinses to help with dry mouth.

Talk to your doctor

If your oral hygiene is beyond compare and you don't have a dry mouth, see your doctor. There are several serious medical problems associated with bad breath, such as:

  • Sinus infections
  • Acid reflux
  • diabetes
  • bronchitis 

Talk to your dentist

Good oral hygiene will likely solve your problem, but you may need to take a more proactive stance and speak to a dentist about your problem once you have ruled out the causes listed above. Consider also the following tips on combating this issue.

1. Keep a travel size tube of toothpaste and a brush with you at all times, and brush after every meal. Don't imagine that a piece of chewing gum will work as well as a real brushing.

2. Water solves several problem at once, and is good for you in more ways than can be listed here. Water consumption will keep your mouth rinsed constantly and will help fight dry mouth.

3. Brush your tongue as well as your teeth.

4. Replace your toothbrush every month or so and always use a fresh new brush after an illness. 

Speak to a dentist like Kuban David S DDS for more help on dealing with this issue and to ensure good oral health for your mouth.