Bad breath, or halitosis, is a very common problem for many people. While some reasons for bad breath are not a cause for concern, others may indicate a more serious dental problem. Common causes of bad breath include:
Poor Oral Hygiene
A very common reason for bad breath is poor oral hygiene. When you don’t brush or floss your teeth regularly, food particles stay in your mouth. Bacteria break down the food particles and create unpleasant breath. The buildup of bacteria can also lead to gum disease. Brush your teeth twice a day and make sure to floss every day. If you use dentures or retainers, keep them clean.
Eating foods such as garlic, certain spices, and onions may cause bad breath. As you digest these foods, your bloodstream carries odor-causing food particles throughout the body. When they enter the lungs, they cause bad breath when you exhale.
Drinking coffee may also lead to bad breath. In addition to the strong flavor, the caffeine may cause dry mouth, which increases odor-causing bacteria in the mouth.
Your saliva helps to keep your mouth clean by clearing away food particles that lead to bad breath. If your mouth is dry, the food particles remain in your mouth and cause bad breath. Dry mouth is a common side effect of prescription medications. You can reduce dry mouth by drinking water or chewing sugar-free gum.
Smoking or chewing tobacco causes a number of health problems, including bad breath. Not only does smoking cause bad breath, it also stains your teeth and increases your risk of gum disease and oral cancer.
Certain medical conditions may cause bad breath. Respiratory infections, sinus infections, acid reflux, or diabetes may lead to bad breath.
If you’re concerned about your breath, talk to your dentist. Contact us now to schedule an appointment.