Bad breath isn’t usually serious, but it can be embarrassing and detrimental to your self-esteem. Several factors can contribute to bad breath, most of them easily dealt with. If you have persistent bad breath in spite of diligent dental hygiene, talk to our dentist. There could be an underlying problem that requires treatment.
Causes of Bad Breath
The most common cause of bad breath, or halitosis, is an excess of bacteria in your mouth. If you don’t brush and floss regularly, bacteria builds up on your teeth. Bacteria creates gases as a waste product, and these gases have an unpleasant odor. If you keep your mouth clean, you’ll keep the bacteria under control and avoid bad breath.
However, in some cases bad breath is related to more serious problems. These can include:
- Dry mouth
- Gum disease
- Tooth decay
- Sinus problems
If you suspect another underlying cause to your bad breath, you should consult with your dentist. Proper diagnosis is important in case there is a serious issue underlying your persistent halitosis.
Preventing Bad Breath
Keeping your teeth clean with brushing and flossing, as well as regular visits to our dentist, are the first and most effective ways to prevent bad breath as well as gum disease and tooth decay. Cleaning your tongue can also help, since bacteria can collect there as well. You can use your toothbrush to clean it, or you can use a tool specially designed to clean the tongue. Ask our dentist to recommend an appropriate tool if you’re not sure what will work best for you.
If you have other problems, such as dry mouth or tooth decay, these must be treated before your bad breath is likely to improve. Our dental team can determine the appropriate treatment. This could include over-the-counter remedies or prescription medication for dry mouth or tooth restorations to remove decay. If you have problems with your sinuses, or another issue such as diabetes, your doctor will need to make a diagnosis and determine the appropriate treatment.
If you have further questions about your own bad breath, make an appointment with Dr. Bush and call our office today!