Recent reports show that as much as half the nation’s population suffers from bad breath. For some people, it’s an occasional problem but is still disturbing. In other cases, it’s a chronic issue that plagues its victims virtually all the time. Though mouthwash, mints, and gum can help, halitosis keeps creeping into the picture, making people reluctant to interact with others and greatly detracting from their lives. Bad breath can come from several sources. If you’re among the millions of people who find it to be a problem, take a look at some of the most common causes of bad breath to get a better idea of why you might be having issues.
Poor Oral Hygiene
For many people, poor oral hygiene is the reason their breath isn’t quite as pleasant as it could be. You can conduct a search for the Best Family Dentist Near Me and book an appointment to learn more about your unique oral hygiene needs. In general, it’s best to brush your teeth and floss at least twice a day. Be sure to cover all surfaces of your teeth, and don’t ignore your gums and tongue as hiding places for odor-causing bacteria.
It’s no secret that spicy foods can cause unpleasant breath. Onions and garlic are common culprits as well. Though brushing your teeth after meals and having a stick of gum for dessert can help, those efforts may not always provide effective results. Even food particles in your throat can affect your breath long after eating.
Dairy products are tasty, and they provide several health benefits. Some even contain ample amounts of the healthy bacteria we need to promote digestive and immune system health. Unfortunately, they also contain bacteria that can linger in our mouths and cause halitosis.
Too Much Sugar
We’ve all been taught that too much sugar isn’t good for our health. It’s not good for our breath, either. Bacteria in the mouth feed on sugar, so when we eat sugary foods, those bacteria multiply and take a toll on our breath.
Foods that are high in protein are essential for building healthy muscle tissue and generating energy. Still, when those foods are digesting, they can produce noxious substances that flow up through the esophagus and manifest in your breath. This issue is often compounded if you pair a high-protein diet with a low-carb lifestyle due to the metabolic changes that come from reducing carbohydrate intake.
Alcohol contains excessive amounts of sugars, so it feeds the bacteria in your mouth. To make matters worse, it also causes dehydration and decreases saliva production. When it comes to bad breath, this is a double whammy.
Dry mouth is a leading cause of bad breath. Saliva helps break down odor-causing food particles and minimize bacteria in the mouth. If you’re not producing enough saliva, it can’t do its part to combat unpleasant breath.
Gum disease, or periodontitis, is also a common cause of bad breath. With this condition, buildup on the teeth generates toxins, and pockets in the gums become breeding grounds for bacteria. Both of those issues increase your risks of bad breath as well as other issues.
Numerous digestive problems can cause unpleasant breath. These range from acid reflux and chronic indigestion to constipation and IBD. If you frequently experience digestive difficulties or have a medical condition that causes problems like those, it may negatively affect your breath.
Certain medications are known to contribute to bad breath. Those that bring about dry mouth and other unpleasant side effects are the most problematic. If you’re experiencing bad breath and no other reason seems to be the cause, one of your prescription medications may be the culprit.
Combating Bad Breath
Frequent brushing and flossing can help keep bad breath at bay. Mouthwashes and sugar-free mints may help as well. If dry mouth is the cause of unpleasant breath, moisturizing mouthwashes are also available. Don’t hesitate to reach out to a dentist or general physician for extra assistance if the problem persists.