Halitosis = Bad Breath = Oh Help!
If you have persistent bad breath, you’re literally breathing a sigh of relief now that the holidays have passed and the mistletoe has been taken down. After all, if you have foul-smelling breath, medically known as halitosis, chances are that you did what you could to keep yourself from kissing anyone under that leafy mistletoe.
But do you really want to keep suffering from bad breath, especially with more kissable holidays and celebrations coming up? Do you want to keep covering your mouth with your hand when you speak to your colleagues? You don’t have to suffer from bad breath. By understanding bad breath causes and bad breath solutions, you can quickly be on your way to a fresher and more kissable mouth.
10 Common Causes of Bad Breath
One of the best things you can do to solve bad breath is to understand what causes it in the first place. In reality, there are a variety of causes and one or all of them could be contributing to your halitosis. Check out this list of common causes of bad breath suggested by oral care product company Listerine.
- Poor oral hygiene that doesn’t consist of twice-a-day toothbrushing, daily flossing, and rinsing with a fluoridated mouthwash can leave your breath smelling anything but fresh.
- Eating certain foods like onions, garlic, and other vegetables and spices can also lead to halitosis.
- Coffee can lead to bad breath because of its effect on saliva production. When you drink coffee, the caffeine contributes to a decline in saliva production in your mouth. And less saliva means more odor-causing bacteria.
- Drinking alcohol, especially excessively, can cause a decrease in the production of saliva, which in turn can contribute to bad breath.
- A high-sugar diet can lead to bad breath. Sugars interact with the existing bacteria in your mouth, turning those sweet smells into sour smells. Since sugar is terrible for your teeth and can contribute to obesity, too, it is best to look for low-sugar meal options.
- Smoking and the use of tobacco products are sure contributors to halitosis. Since smoking and using tobacco can also cause lung and other cancers, and can lessen your life expectancy, it is best to quit use altogether.
- A lack of saliva production, commonly referred to as dry mouth, can cause bad breath. Saliva assists you in chewing, tasting, and swallowing. Further, saliva helps fight germs in your mouth that cause bad breath. And of course, saliva contains proteins and minerals that protect your tooth enamel, thus helping to prevent tooth decay and gum disease.
- Carbohydrates are essential for your body, so if your body does not get enough carbohydrates, it can lead to bad breath. A lack of carbs causes changes to your body’s metabolism. Similarly, high-protein foods can be challenging for your body to digest. Proteins release sulfurous gasses when they don’t metabolize. So one of the best things you can do to avoid bad breath is to eat a well-balanced diet that includes fruits and vegetables.
- Many prescription medications are associated with halitosis, usually because they dry out the mouth. Typical offenders are antihistamines, amphetamines, antidepressants, some antipsychotics, diuretics, decongestants, anticholinergics, and some sedatives.
- Poor digestion, constipation, or bowel disorders can cause bad breath too. If you have acid reflux frequently, the odors from those recently consumed foods can work their way back up the esophagus and out the mouth, and this can lead to some smelly breath.
10 Ways to Get Rid of Bad Breath Fast
If you have bad breath and need to be kissable or conversation-ready, thankfully there are some things you can do. The best ways to reduce or prevent bad breath are to:
- Brush your teeth twice a day with fluoride-containing toothpaste, especially after meals.
- Change out your toothbrush every three or four months or when the bristles get frayed. Always brush with a soft-bristled toothbrush.
- Floss at least once a day.
- Brush your tongue with a tongue scraper at least once per day. Or use a toothbrush that has a built-in tongue scraper.
- Adjust your diet to avoid stinky foods such as onions, garlic, and smelly vegetables and spices.
- Chew sugar-free chewing gum. Not only does this help stimulate saliva production, but it helps rinse away food particles in your mouth.
- Drink plenty of water. Adults should strive for eight 8-ounce glasses of water per day.
- If you wear a bridge, denture, or retainer, clean it thoroughly at least once a day or as directed by your dentist or orthodontist.
- Keep your mouth moist by avoiding tobacco products and staying properly hydrated. Also try to limit your consumption of coffee, soft drinks, or alcohol.
- See your dentist once every six months for a dental cleaning and oral examination.
How can I get rid of the bad smell for good?
Though the above suggestions are good ways to help you get rid of bad breath fast, your dentist will be able to help you control that halitosis for the long term. By seeing the dentist every six months, you and your dentist can stay on top of tooth decay and any other issues in your mouth. Further, your dentist can recommend mouth rinses and toothpaste to kill the bacteria in your mouth more successfully. In some cases, you may need an antibacterial agent to kill the bacteria that cause plaque buildup.
Gum disease causes your gums to pull away from your teeth. This leaves deep pockets that fill with odor-causing bacteria. In some cases, only the professional cleaning provided by your dentist can remove this bacteria. Your top dentist in Wasilla might also suggest the replacement of faulty tooth restorations, which tend to serve as a breeding ground for bacteria. And, if you have gum disease, your dentist can help you with a referral to a periodontist.
Pay a visit to the top dentist in Wasilla.
Whether you have bad breath or anything else keeping you from smiling, the Valley Dental Clinic in Wasilla, Alaska, can help so that you come away with a bright, white smile and kissable, approachable breath. If you need help with your bad breath or are looking for a smile by design, now is the time to request an appointment. We look forward to seeing you soon.