Things Your Bad Breath Could be Telling You

No one likes to hear their friend or significant other say the words, “You have bad breath.”

You might not know some of the underlying reasons for smelly breath. Some people don’t even realize that they have pungent smelling breath because it is hard to tell unless you are the one on the other side smelling it.

Bad breath can be caused by the following reasons:  

  • Food – This is the primary source of bad breath  
  • Infections in your mouth – Gum disease, cavities and sores in your mouth  
  • Respiratory infections- Sinus and throat infections
  • Medications – Medicines containing antihistamines and diuretics can cause you to have dry mouth, which can cause bad breath.
  • Acid reflux – Leaves sour taste in your mouth, which could result in bad breath

There are also some more serious health conditions that can leave you having bad breath including diabetes, chronic bronchitis and liver disease.

If you notice that your baby or young child has bad breath, it could be a sign of an infection or a worse undiagnosed medical problem.

Some of the simplest ways to fix bad breath include regular dental visits and professional teeth cleanings, a good diet, and good oral hygiene habits.

“You should schedule six-month appointments to make sure you are keeping up with proper oral hygiene,” says Dr. Robert Walley, a San Francisco dentist.

Most of the time bad breath is easy to fix. Here are some helpful tips to maintain fresh breath:

Proper daily oral hygiene- You should brush and floss your teeth after every meal to reduce bacteria that causes odor. If you choose to use mouthwash, stick to mouthwashes that kill bacteria instead of one that focuses on freshening your breath.

Watch your diet- Remember that everything you eat will continue to linger on your breath. Eat a healthy, well-balanced diet and avoid garlic and onions to keep your breath smelling fresh.

Drink water- Staying hydrated is important for more reasons than one. If you can’t brush your teeth after each meal, drinking water can help rinse and get rid of bacteria left in your mouth. You should avoid soda and sugary drinks that leave behind sugary residue on your teeth.

Avoid alcohol and tobacco- Alcohol leaves your mouth dry, which can leave you with hours of smelly breath. Tobacco products cause foul odors because of the stink left in your mouth after smoking a cigarette or chewing tobacco.

Don’t depend on gum and mints- Some breath mints and gum are full of sugar, which isn’t good for your teeth and your breath. Try sugar-free mints as a temporary fix to bad breath. Sugar-free gum can actually help with saliva flow to fix bad odor and even prevent cavities.

Bad breath isn’t a comfortable conversation topic, but at our office, we want to talk to you about how to stay free of bad breath.

“It’s no fun spending your day worrying about getting too close to someone you are talking to,” says Dr. Walley. “We want to help you figure out the underlying issues that are causing your bad breath.”