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Halitosis / Bad Breath

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Do you have Halitosis?

Halitosis is bad breath….how do you know if you have it? What causes it? How do you prevent it? Rely on your Dental Professional or loved one to help you in this matter.

More than 80 million people are affected with bad breath. Have you ever noticed that a baby doesn’t have bad breath until their teeth erupt? Typically bad breath is related to your gums, your teeth and or your tongue. Halitosis is caused by the waste toxins of bacteria, old food particles and bad oral hygiene. Certain foods such as onions, garlic, spicy foods, and even coffee can stay on the breath for up to 72 hours. Over the counter and prescriptions medications decrease saliva flow and can increase bad breath and decay tremendously. Dehydration is another cause for bad breath. Saliva is a bath for the oral cavity and when you sleep the saliva decreases and this allows the bacteria to grow which causes the morning breath smell. Bad breath can also be caused from systemic disease such as an infection, diabetes, kidney failure or liver malfunction. Hormonal changes especially during puberty, pregnancy, and menopause can also affect your breath. The most common reason for tonsillectomies in adults is due to crypts (holes in the gland tissue) that form and adults are extremely motivated to have the surgery performed because food gets caught in these crypts and can stay in the tonsils for days which can also cause bad breath. Periodontal disease, decayed and abscessed teeth can be a major cause of bad breath. Tobacco is a contributing factor as well. Smoking increases the temperature in the mouth, the bacteria breeds faster and it also contributes to dry mouth. No one wants to smell like an ashtray.

What can you do to prevent bad breath? Visit your dentist! Don’t be embarrassed to talk to us…we are experts in this field. . We are here to help you. First oral hygiene is very important. Brush and floss every day! A tongue scraper is very important because the bacteria and their by-products hide in the rough surface of the tongue. A metal tongue scraper is best. Use sugarless gum and mints containing Xyitol. Chewing on fresh parsley can help. There are many products that we can recommend to increase your saliva flow. A clean mouth is a healthy one. Many over the counter mouth washes only give you a false sense of security for a short period of time. Periodontal therapy to treat gum disease is the number ONE treatment priority. Abscessed, necrotic teeth need to be treated. Very distinctive bad breath can be associated with a physiological disorder. Your dentist will refer you to your Physician if they think it is necessary. Halitosis can be treated….

Don’t ignore it……see your dentist!