Bad Breath: Causes, Prevention And Treatment



It can be so embarrassing when someone tells you of your bad breath. It can affect the way you choose to relate with people. Sometimes you may want to avoid going too close to people. Someone with bad breath will never want to whisper into another person's ear. Bad breath is a common problem that can affect anyone. Bad breath (halitosis) is characterized by an unpleasant odor of the mouth. The main cause of bad breath is poor oral hygiene. Bacteria build up in the mouth combine with saliva to breakdown tiny pieces of food left in the mouth (teeth, tongue and gums) to release unpleasant smell.

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Causes of bad breath
Bad breath can also be caused from gum infection, eating foods that has high flavour such as spices, onions and garlic. Most of the time bad breath caused by food is short term. Smoking and excessive alcohol drinking can cause bad breath. Sometimes when you take certain drugs following an illness, bad breath can occur. Certain medical conditions can cause bad breath such as dry mouth(xerostomia) which is lack of saliva flow, causing bacteria to build up in the mouth, resulting to bad breath.

Prevention and Treatment
* Quit smoking. Gum infection can cause bad breath and smoking increases your risk of developing gum infections.

* If your bad breath is as a result of health problem such as diabetes, make sure the present medical problem is treated.

* Experiencing bad breath as a result of taking certain treatment plan, can be resolved by discussing the issue with your doctor whether there are other alternative forms of treatment that can be taken. Never on your own should you stop taking a medication without your doctor consent.

* To curb the effect of dry mouth, drink water regularly. This will temporarily dislodge bacteria and make your breath a bit more pleasant.

*. Limit eating foods and drinks that can cause bad breath. You do not want to eat such food regularly.

* Eating foods like carrots and apples can help wipe off the materials buildup in the mouth that has the ability to cause bad breath.

*. Consumption of probiotic food such as yoghurt and sauerkraut can help eliminate bacteria causing bad odour and allow beneficial bacteria (Lactobacillus) to thrive, effectively removing bad breath from the mouth.

*. Always use mouthwash products that contain zinc. Zinc is a known antimicrobial agent that can be helpful in eliminating harmful germs. Eating food rich in zinc such as pumpkin can also be beneficial.

*. If you are an advocate of herbal toothpaste, use a toothpaste that contains natural disinfectant such as basil and tree oil. 

Above all, good oral hygiene will help to eliminate bad breath, if not completely but to a certain reasonable degree. You need to brush and floss your teeth regularly to avoid food particles been between your teeth so that bacteria do not breakdown down these food particles and cause bad breath. You need to keep your tongue clean as bacteria can also inhabit the rough surface of your tongue. Remember your dentist can advise you on the best ways to improve your oral health so you should always make a regular visit.

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