Bad breath can be extremely embarrassing and unpleasant to deal with. You may end up feeling self-conscious in social situations, or whenever people get too close. While you expect that your breath might smell strong after eating foods like onion or garlic, if you always have bad breath, it could indicate more severe oral problems. By understanding what causes this condition, you can begin to take the necessary steps to treat it.
1. Poor Dental Hygiene
The most common cause of bad breath is poor dental hygiene. Plaque is constantly forming on your teeth. It builds up in between your teeth, around them, and on the surface. Plaque is a type of bacteria that feeds off the sugars and starches in your food. When plaque breaks down those particles, they release a gas that is unpleasant to smell.
To reduce bad breath caused by plaque buildup, it’s essential to go for regular cleanings every six months, at a local dental surgeon like Pakenham Dental Surgery. Additionally, you should be brushing two a day, using a toothpaste containing fluoride and flossing to get those hard to reach places.
2. Gum Disease
Bad breath is one of the warning signs that you could be developing gum disease. Gum disease occurs from plaque buildup on the gum line, which leads to swollen and bleeding gums. If you don’t treat it, then it could result in gum disease. If you notice that your breath is terrible and it’s not going away, you should immediately see a dentist to try to fix the problem before it gets too severe.
If you’re fasting or doing a crash diet, you may experience bad breath. When you aren’t eating proper meals and starving your body of essential nutrients, it will start to feed off your body fat. During the process of your body breaking down its stored fat, it will produce a type of chemical called ketone. When your body releases the ketone through your breath, the smell is very unpleasant. If you notice that your breath is bad during a fast or diet, then changing your diet should fix it.
4. Medical Condition
Some medical conditions have bad breath as a side effect. If you’re already aware of a specific medical condition that you have, then it’s likely it could be the cause of your bad breath. If you have no medical problems that you’re aware of, then it’s a good idea to see your doctor to identify if there is something else going on. Dry mouth, or Xerostomia, is a medical condition that inhibits the flow of saliva into your mouth. Saliva is essential to rinse away bad breath bacteria, so without it, your breath may smell bad.
Additionally, throat and chest infections, diabetes and gastrointestinal conditions may also contribute to bad breath. If you have a throat infection or a cold, then the bad breath should subside once you’re feeling better. If you still find your breath is off afterwards, it never hurts to speak to a medical professional to discuss your concerns.