What Causes Bad Breath

Bad breath, also known as halitosis. Bad Breath is usually caused by the breakdown of proteins by bacteria somewhere in the mouth. Certain foods, such as garlic and onions, contribute to objectionable breath odor. Bad breath can also be caused by dry mouth (xerostomia), which occurs when the flow of saliva decreases. Saliva is necessary to cleanse the mouth and remove particles that may cause odor. Dry mouth may be caused by various medications, salivary gland problems or continuously breathing through the mouth. In many people, the millions of bacteria that live in the mouth (particularly on the back of the tongue) are the primary causes of bad breath. The mouth’s warm, moist conditions make an ideal environment for these bacteria to grow. Most bad breath is caused by something in the mouth. Particles of food remain in the mouth, collecting bacteria, which can cause bad breath. Canker sores may be related to bad breath, especially if they accompany periodontal disease.

Food that collects between the teeth, on the tongue and around the gums can rot, leaving an unpleasant odor. Poor oral hygiene leads to bad breath because when you leave food particles in your mouth, these pieces of food can rot and start to smell. Tobacco products cause bad breath. Bad breath may be the sign of a medical disorder, such as a local infection in the respiratory tract, chronic sinusitis, postnasal drip, chronic bronchitis, diabetes, gastrointestinal disturbance, liver or kidney ailment. Bad breath is usually caused by the bacteria that live in a person’s mouth. Severe dieting-Dieters may develop unpleasant “fruity” breath from ketoacidosis, the breakdown of chemicals during fasting. Bad breath is also associated with sinus infections because nasal discharge from your sinuses into the back of your throat can cause mouth odor.

Strep throat, tonsillitis and mononucleosis can cause bad breath until the throat infection clears. A person may not always know that he or she has bad breath. This phenomenon is because odor-detecting cells in the nose eventually become accustomed to the constant flow of bad smells from the mouth. Dry mouth — Difficulty swallowing dry foods, difficulty speaking for a prolonged period because of mouth dryness, a burning sensation in the mouth, an unusually high number of dental caries, dry eyes. Infections in the mouth — Gums may be red, swollen and bleed easily, especially after brushing or flossing; pus may drain from between teeth; a pocket of pus at the base of a tooth; loose teeth or a change in “fit” of a denture; painful, open sores on the tongue or gums. Systemic (bodywide) illnesses — Symptoms of diabetes, lung disease, kidney failure or liver disease.

Bad Breath Treatment Tips

1. Use a fairly new toothbrush. Change your toothbrush every three to four months, and choose a soft-bristled toothbrush.

2. Avoid coffee, soft drinks or alcohol and cigrette.

3. Oral infections must be eliminated or impacted teeth may need to be removed.

4. Good oral hygiene must be stressed, including cleaning the teeth and tongue.

5. Drink plenty of water.

6. Clean your mouth after eating dairy products, fish and meat.

7. Chew sugar-free gum, especially if your mouth feels dry.

8. Eat fresh food and fibrous vegetables