Causes of bad breath and prevention tips

Causes of bad breath

A person’s breath can be reflective not just of one’s oral health and hygiene but also overall physical health. There are numerous reasons for having a foul odor in the mouth and this condition is medically termed as halitosis. Poor dental habits, particular types of food consumed and unhealthy lifestyles are major contributing factors to bad breath.

Foods rich in garlic or onion, sea food etc. can give off bad breath even after rinsing one’s mouth with mouthwash or brushing and flossing. Food unless digested and passed to the large intestine will continue to give off bad odor that can reach the oral cavity as well. Consequently, if a person has digestive problems and has acid reflux disease, it can result in bad breath.

A medical condition called Xerostomia causes dry mouth. When the oral cavity remains dry for long periods, the saliva which carries the function of keeping the mouth clean by washing away dead cells is unable to do so and the dead cells present for a longer period decompose giving off bad odor. Continuous breathing through the mouth, salivary gland problems and intake of medications can also cause bad breath.

Other common causes of bad breath which most people are aware of is the buildup of plaque in between the teeth, cavities and tooth decay, gum infections and other periodontal diseases. Patients suffering from pneumonia, respiratory tract infections, and postnatal drip, and liver or kidney problems can be indicated by bad breath.

Prevention Tips

If you’re a smoker, its best to quit smoking as tobacco has a tendency to dry out one’s mouth and the unpleasant smell caused lingers for a long time even after you may brush your teeth.

Munching on some dental chewing gum not only helps keep bad breath away, it is also considered a good exercise for your gums and keeps them healthy in the long run.

Munching on healthy vegetables or fruits like an apple, a carrot stick etc. helps produce saliva in the mouth which in turn helps wash away bacteria and dead cells in the mouth. Moreover, fruits like apples and vegetables also have health benefits without requiring you to compromise too much on your calorie intake and overall diet.

In most cases, bad breath is caused due to poor dental and oral hygiene. Flossing, rinsing the mouth after any consumption of food ensures that your mouth remains clean. Also, while flossing and brushing, do not forget to occasionally clean out your tongue as well.

If none of the above applies in your case, its time you be aware that the bad breath could be indicative of some serious illness; something as common as diabetes and gastro esophageal reflux or serious as kidney problems and is best to get yourself diagnosed in time. Unless you find the cause for an issue, it will be very difficult to cure it.