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Why Do I Have Bad Breath?  

February 13, 2023

Why Do I Have Bad Breath?

Bad breath, or halitosis, can be a real problem. It’s embarrassing and can make you feel self-conscious. But what causes it? And how can you get rid of it? Let’s take a look at the causes of bad breath and some tips for getting rid of it.  

What Causes Bad Breath  

Bad breath, a troublesome and embarrassing condition, can be caused by many different factors. From poor dental hygiene habits to the consumption of certain foods, bad breath has many potential origins. Neglecting to brush and floss regularly can increase decay in the teeth and cause plaque and bacteria buildup, both of which lead to halitosis. Additionally, eating highly acidic foods such as garlic or onions can also lead to an odor emanating from your mouth.   

Factors such as smoking and drinking alcohol can contribute as well. Preemptively addressing these contributing factors is key to avoiding bad breath; ensure that you are brushing twice a day using toothpaste with fluoride and flossing at least once per day. Any food that you consume that may contribute to halitosis should be followed promptly with either a brush or some type of antibacterial mouthwash to actively eliminate any odors.  

How to Get Rid of Bad Breath

Bad breath, also known as halitosis, is an unpleasant symptom that can harm both self-esteem and social relationships. Fortunately, it is usually possible to get rid of bad breath very effectively with a good dental hygiene routine. Brushing your teeth and tongue at least twice a day can help remove food particles and plaque buildup, helping freshen your breath. Flossing helps remove plaque between your teeth that brushing cannot reach. Additionally, using mouthwash in the morning after brushing can help freshen your breath further. Be sure to visit your dentist regularly for professional cleanings to ensure that your oral care routine is up to standard to keep bad breath away.  

How to Prevent Bad Breath  

Prevention is the best strategy for avoiding bad breath. It’s important to maintain good dental hygiene practices, like brushing and flossing twice a day and using mouthwash regularly. Additionally, these habits may reduce bacteria in your mouth that can cause bad breath. Having regular dental check-ups is also key to keeping your breath fresh, as it allows your dentist to catch any oral health concerns early on before they have time to worsen. Finally, cutting back on foods with powerful aromas, such as garlic and onions, can help prevent odor-causing bacteria build-up in the mouth. Keeping up with these basic measures and paying attention to personal hygiene are simple but effective ways to keep bad breath at bay.  

When to See a Dentist About Bad Breath  

Bad breath can be an embarrassing problem for many people, and if it is a recurring issue, it may be worth considering seeing a dentist. The underlying cause of bad breath can be complex and although many home remedies can help with bad breath such as keeping hydrated and brushing your teeth regularly, persistent bad breath may indicate an underlying dental health issue such as gum disease or cavities that require attention from a professional. Dental hygienists know to assess the source of the issue and provide the best course of action needed to get rid of bad breath. Therefore, if you feel that your bad breath simply cannot go away with self-care solutions, it is recommended to make an appointment with your local dentist who can examine your mouth in detail and advise you on how to reduce or eliminate your bad breath as soon as possible.  

Bad breath, also called halitosis, can be embarrassing and tough to deal with. But you’re not alone—about 80 million people suffer from bad breath in the United States. The good news is that there are things you can do to get rid of bad breath and keep it from coming back. If you’ve tried these home remedies and your bad breath persists, it could be a sign of something more serious like gum disease or an underlying medical condition. In this case, you should see your dentist to get to the bottom of the problem. Give us a call at Sinquefield Family Dentistry if you need to make an appointment—we’d be happy to help!