Bad breath, also known medically as halitosis, affects more people than most would believe. In reality, bad breath is a common problem that has an array of causes and that can be treated with a similarly expansive number of cures, both behavioral and over the counter.
You shouldn’t ignore your bad breath because, beyond being an annoyance and at times even an embarrassment, it may be a sign of a more serious problem that cannot be ignored.
Medical Causes of Halitosis
Sometimes, bad breath can be a marker of serious oral health problems. Gum disease and tooth decay are two common sources of bad breath or bad taste in the mouth. Dry mouth can also result in bad breath because of the accumulation of bacteria that occurs when the mouth isn’t well hydrated.
Halitosis can sometimes indicate very serious health problems like chronic bronchitis, tuberculosis, liver disorders, chronic sinus infections, diabetes, acid reflux disease, and kidney problems.
Behavioral Causes of Halitosis
At other times, halitosis can be caused by more basic things like the foods you eat or your oral hygiene habits. Your dentist can help you understand what is probably causing your halitosis and what would be the best solution to combat it.
Try out some of these behavioral tips and natural remedies to treat your halitosis at the source, before it becomes a serious problem.
Watch What You Eat
We can all name a few smelly foods right of the top of our heads – like garlic and onions, to name a couple. These foods may taste great but they leave you with bad breath for hours or even days after the meal is over.
Because these odors are caused by a combination of factors, even brushing your teeth after digestion will not completely remove the smell. If you are suffering from bad breath, it is best to avoid eating too many of these strongly smelling foods to see if that helps you control your problem.
Maintain Good Oral Hygiene Habits
As we all know, it is important to brush your teeth at least twice a day and floss at least once. If not, we are prone to more cavities and other oral health problems. Not brushing or flossing regularly or correctly can cause halitosis as the food begins to decay in the mouth and release an odor.
Smoking or chewing tobacco can also cause bad breath along with gum problems that can cause halitosis. Dentures should be removed and cleaned nightly and the mouth should be washed as well.
Avoiding these detrimental activities and taking proper care of your teeth and mouth can protect against common oral problems like gingivitis and tooth decay that often cause both pain and halitosis.
Oral Products to Combat Bad Breath
If you are suffering from bad breath, visit your dentist to get their opinion on its causes. If it is not an indicator of a more serious problem, your dentist should be able to suggest many different solutions to your problem.
If you think you have halitosis because of a dry mouth, try using mint flavored gum or mint capsules to refresh your mouth and your breath. You can also buy special mouthwashes to help get at the bacteria in between your teeth that may be causing these problems.
There is no reason to be ashamed of your bad breath or live with the discomfort it brings you any longer. Visit your dentist to identify what is probably causing your halitosis and consider altering your diet or oral hygiene habits to make your bad breath disappear.