What are the Causes and Treatments of Bad Breath?

Did you ever wonder why there are so many mouthwashes, mints, gum, and other products out there to fight bad breath? That’s because bad breath can be embarrassing and over the counter products are just a temporary fix. Depending on the source or the cause of bad breath, bad breath odors can vary. Some people have bad breath and don’t know it.

Causes of Bad Breath

Sometimes your bad breath, also known as halitosis, is caused by the foods you eat, your medical condition, dental hygiene and more.

Some of the causes of bad breath include:

After chewing food, the food particles around your teeth increase the bacteria in your mouth causing your bad breath. Eating spicy foods or onions or garlic can also cause bad breath. After your food is digested and carried in your bloodstream to your lungs, it can affect your breath.
Smokers and users of tobacco products, such as chewing tobacco, have a tendency to develop gum disease, another source of bad breath.
If you are not flossing and brushing every day the particles of food you have eaten stay in your mouth, causing your bad breath. In addition, plaque, a sticky type of bacteria, develops on your teeth and, over time, pockets of plaque will form between your teeth and your gums causing periodontitis, gum disease. If you wear dentures and don’t clean them regularly or, if they are ill-fitting, they can trap odor-causing bacteria and food particles.
When you have dry mouth, also known as xerostomia, the production of saliva in your mouth is decreased. Saliva helps to keep your mouth clean by removing particles that cause bad odors. When you have chronic dry mouth it could be caused by a salivary gland problem or some diseases.
Some medicines that you take may cause bad breath by drying out your mouth. Other medications may break down in your body causing it to release chemicals that cause your bad breath.
Bad breath can be caused if you have had a tooth removed, oral surgery, or if you have a decayed tooth, gum disease or mouth sores.
Bad breath can occur if you have infections or chronic inflammations in your nose, sinuses, or throat that lead to a post-nasal drip.
Conditions such as metabolic disorders, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and some cancers can be the cause of bad breath.

Treatment of Bad Breath

You need to practice good dental hygiene habits by making sure you floss, to remove food particles and plaque from between your teeth. Brush your teeth and tongue, with a fluoride toothpaste at least twice a day, after eating. Avoid dry mouth by drinking plenty of water. If you have dentures or a dental appliance, clean it thoroughly at least once a day or as directed by your dentist at Island Dental Associates. Watch your diet to avoid sugary foods and foods that cause bad breath. Change your toothbrush to a soft-bristled toothbrush every two to three months. If you smoke, stop smoking. Make sure you schedule your regular dental checkup with the dentists at Island Dental Associates every six months so you can have your teeth or dentures examined and your teeth cleaned.

The dentists at Island Dental Associates will examine you to find the source of your bad breath. Our dentists will work with you to control your condition by making sure that you have no plaque buildup on your teeth. We will also check you for gum disease to make sure that there are no deep plaque-filled pockets of odor-causing bacteria.

If you think you have bad breath or haven’t seen us for some time, please contact us to schedule an appointment or you can call us at 516-565-6565. The dentists at Island Dental Associates will discuss your dental history and your concerns with you and explain treatment options so you can make an informed decision.