Do I have bad breath?
Many patients come to the office with concerns about bad breath related to themselves or their children. Dr. Govani and her dental team like to help patients to find the root cause of this problem. Chronic bad breath can be embarrassing and sometimes be linked to larger systemic problems. Often times bad breath can be combated with simple solutions that can be done at home along with routine visits to the dentist for needed exams and cleaning appointments. Together we can help prevent this embarrassing issue and give patients their confidence in their breathe and smile.
Constant bad breath
Constant bad breath, otherwise known as halitosis, is a concern for many people. Studies have shown that approximately 50 percent of the adult population suffers from bad breath. Now, that’s a lot of people. In many cases, you can improve bad breath by establishing a proper dental care routine. However, sometimes there are more serious conditions that can lead to halitosis. So, let’s look at the causes and find out how to get rid of bad breath.
Periodontal or gum disease
This is the most common source of bad breath and needs to be properly managed for the long-term health of your mouth. Periodontal or gum disease is caused when plaque is missed when brushing and then becomes trapped around the gum tissue, creating pockets. These pockets become full of bacteria, causing bone loss and produces bad odors.
You may not know that you have periodontal or gum disease, so it’s important to see your trusted dentist regularly to monitor any changes to your oral health.
If you are suffering from bad breath, you may have untreated tooth decay. Cavities or tooth decay are the result of bacteria feeding on sugars or foods and producing an acid that eats away at tooth surfaces.
If you have a cavity, you may experience tooth pain and sensitivity, bad breath, or even notice dark spots on your teeth. Cavities won’t fix themselves and it’s easier and less expensive to treat them when they are small.
Not brushing your tongue
If you don’t suffer from gum disease or untreated decay, the bacteria on your tongue is one of the leading causes of bad breath. The tongue has many crevices where bacteria thrives. Include brushing your tongue in your every dental routine by starting at the back of the tongue and moving forward, brushing back and forth. When brushing your tongue, it’s important to apply a comfortable amount of pressure and then rinse with water.
Tongue scrapers are a great tool to help you with brushing your tongue. However, for most, the bristles of a toothbrush are just fine.
What you eat does affect your breath. Avoid foods like garlic, onions, and coffee. If you can’t resist, consider carrying around a toothbrush and travel sized toothpaste to brush on the go.
Smoking and tobacco
Smoking causes tooth discoloration, bad breath, gum disease, and even increases plaque and tartar build up. The best option for a healthy smile is to avoid smoking altogether.
Your mouth might not be making enough saliva, leading to dry mouth. Saliva helps neutralize the acids caused by plaque and washes away food particles throughout the day. Dry mouth may be caused by medication, salivary gland problems, or open mouth breathing. When you start to notice that your mouth is dry, consider drinking water or chewing sugar-free gum to increase saliva production and decrease bad breath.
Some diseases and conditions such as diabetes, cancers or metabolic disorders, may cause distinct breath odor by the chemicals they produce. Sinus infections and acid reflux are commonly associated with bad breath. If you suffer from a medical condition, it’s important to discuss this with Dr. Govani and her trusted team.
4 ways to get rid of bad breath
Practice good dental habits
Brush with an antibacterial fluoride toothpaste twice a day and floss daily. This helps eliminate plaque and bacteria that cause constant bad breath. In addition, try to incorporate tongue brushing into your daily dental routine. Use a toothbrush or a tongue scraper twice a day to clean off the white coat or film on the back of your tongue. Mouthwash works great in conjunction with brushing, flossing, and tongue brushing to help leave your mouth feeling fresh.
Drink enough water
Many patients do not drink enough water. Water is a great way to keep the mouth hydrated and flush away odor causing bacteria. Water will help prevent dry mouth which can cause plaque accumulation which harbor bacteria.
This is a dangerous habit, by giving it up you will have fresher breath and improve your quality of life.
Visit the dentist regularly
If you haven’t seen the dentist in a few years, it’s important to start. Professional dental cleanings are recommended to be completed every six months. Your dentist may request that you are seen more frequently based on your overall oral health. Being seen regularly allows us to detect any issues or changes in your oral health and can help determine where the bad breath is coming from.
Battling bad breath
If you believe that you have bad breath, try making some easy lifestyle changes such as brushing your teeth and tongue, flossing daily, staying hydrated, and being seen for regular dental cleanings. Govani Dental wants to see you smile and speak with confidence again. If you’re still wondering how to get rid of bad breath after making these changes, call the office at 920-231-1955 or visit our contact us page.