Bad breath (halitosis) is unpleasant and embarrassing. Not everyone is aware of their problem.
Bad breath can be caused by:
- Poor oral hygiene
- Periodontal disease
- Tooth decay
- Dry mouth (Decreased saliva, Xerostomia) due to medications, salivary gland problems or open-mouth breathing. Treatment can be increased water intake, artificial saliva or sugarless candy.
- Tobacco, which also causes stained teeth and increased risk of periodontal disease
- Odor-causing foods. Garlic and onion odor-causing compounds enter the bloodstream, are transferred to the lungs where they are exhaled and give bad breath.
- People on a diet resulting in an empty stomach with break down their fat and protein reserve for energy, leading to bad breath.
- Underlying medical conditions such as local respiratory infection (nose, throat, lungs), chronic sinusitis, chronic bronchitis, diabetes, gastrointestinal-, liver- or kidney problems.
How can I avoid bad breath?
- Brush your teeth properly (2-3 minutes 2-3 times a day)
- Floss daily.
- Clean your tongue (5 seconds 1-2 times a day) to remove bacteria. Clean you tongue from the back towards the tip. Use a “tongue scraper” or a toothbrush specially designed with a tongue cleaner on the back.
- Use anti-microbial mouthwash designed for halitosis
- It may be recommended to use fluoride gel if you have dry mouth and prone to dental caries.
- Schedule regular dental visits for professional cleaning and checkup.
- Avoid constant use of breath mints containing sugar as they have temporary effect and may cause