How’s Your Breath? Causes and Cures for Bad Breath
No one wants to have bad breath, yet many people do. There are many potential causes for bad breath. At California Dental Group, we want to stress that the best way to permanently treat bad breath is to make an appointment for a dental cleaning and exam. However, there are other short-term solutions you can follow. Read on to learn why you may be experiencing bad breath and a few steps you can take to reduce it.
The causes of breath
Far and away, the top cause of bad breath is poor oral hygiene. In many cases, bad breath arises because a person isn’t able to brush their teeth between meals. They get tiny food fragments on their gums, tongue, and teeth. Those tiny food fragments then grow bacteria. The bacteria creates waste and the food decays – the combination of which creates a sulfur compound. That is what’s actually causing the bad breath. In order to get rid of bath breath caused by poor oral hygiene, the food, bacteria, and sulfuric gas need to be removed.
It’s true that poor oral hygiene is the most likely cause of bad breath but it’s not the only cause and there are other issues that can make the problem worse. Salivary gland issues and some medications can cause dry mouth, which can make breath worse. This is because saliva’s purpose is to moisten the teeth and gums, which helps clear away dead cells. Saliva also works to neutralize acids on the cheeks, gums, and teeth, which can help reduce bad breath as well.
If you have dry mouth, there are a few steps you can take to improve it, including lowering the amount of caffeine you consume, using over the counter saliva substitutes, chewing sugar-free gum, or using a humidifier in your home or offices.
Other causes of bad breath
In addition to poor oral hygiene, there are other causes of bad breath. They include gum disease, tooth decay, diabetes, smoking, braces, infected root canal, issues with the ear, nose, or throat, kidney failure, crooked teeth, liver issues, aging, infection, certain diets, dry mouth, issues with the tonsils, breathing through the mouth exclusively, certain foods such as horseradish, onions, and garlic, dentures that don’t fit correctly, and certain prescription medications.
Tips for reducing bad breath
First and foremost, make sure you’re visiting your dentist every six months for a professional cleaning. Next, make sure that when you brush your teeth you’re brushing your entire mouth, including your tongue, gums, and the roof of your mouth. Use a tongue scraper to get more dead cells off your tongue, use an antimicrobial mouth rinse, and make sure to brush and floss after every meal.
Chewing sugarless gum and drinking plenty of water can help keep your saliva flowing, which helps as well. Your tooth brush should be replaced every three to four months and it’s a good idea to have a toothbrush and floss when you’re out of the house. If these tips don’t help you, then discuss it with California Dental Group when you come for your visit. We can be reached at (800) 407-0161 as well.