Bad breath, or halitosis, is a fear of many people. It affects around 30% of the population, so it is quite common, but that doesn’t make it any less embarrassing or unpleasant. Getting to the root of the bad breath problem means figuring out what is causing it. There are several causes for halitosis, so if you’re wondering how to get rid of it, keep reading to know more.
Food and Drink
This is one of the most common causes of acute bad breath. Foods that are heavy in garlic and onion can leave a lingering odor, so be wary of this when choosing your meal. If you regularly eat these foods, your breath, and even skin, could retain that odor for a long time.
Beverages act similarly. Coffee and alcohol are primary offenders when it comes to bad breath. Alcohol causes dehydration, so unless you are drinking water in rotation on a night out, you might end up with a case of dry mouth and consequential bad breath. Coffee has a strong smell on its own that can last in the mouth for a long time.
Poor Oral Hygiene
Most complaints of bad breath are related to poor oral hygiene. What causes the unpleasant smell is bacteria’s presence in the mouth, especially near the gums and on the tongue. Bacteria thrive when there is food to eat. If you don’t brush or floss regularly, bacteria could be making a massive meal of the food debris stuck in your teeth from breakfast. If you clean out the food by brushing or flossing, the bacteria will disappear and take their odor with them.
If you aren’t drinking enough water, your salivary glands won’t work correctly. Typically, saliva is there to wash away any food debris and bacteria, the same way running water rinses a plate after a meal. Just as that plate will grow bacteria and start smelling, a dry mouth will also result in an unhealthy environment. Keep the saliva running by drinking plenty of water each day.
Some illnesses have the unfortunate side effect of bad breath. Respiratory infections like sinusitis and bronchitis are the main offenders since they often result in phlegm and bacteria buildup. Tonsillitis often results in halitosis, since the bacterial infection is at the back of the throat. Other non-oral illnesses that can contribute to bad breath are kidney disease, liver disease, diabetes, and some gastrointestinal diseases.
If you or a loved one are complaining of bad breath and want to get to the root of the problem and start treatment immediately, contact Newton Dental Associates for professional guidance.