If you’re suffering from persistent bad breath, you’re not alone: studies show that over half of adults have had bad breath, or halitosis, at some point in their lives. There are a number of reasons why you might have it, but the team at Russell Street Dental Associates in Worcester, MA have a list of the most common.
What Causes Bad Breath?
You might be surprised to know that the amount of saliva in your mouth has a big impact on your oral health. Saliva constantly washes out your mouth, clearing away food particles and bacteria from the teeth. Without enough saliva, your mouth and teeth aren’t getting cleaned, leaving bacteria and food behind, causing bad breath. Try to stay hydrated throughout the day to make sure you’re producing enough saliva.
Our mouths are home to naturally-occurring bacteria. While harmless, the bacteria feed on the leftover food particles in your mouth, and this process leaves behind a foul-smelling waste product that causes bad breath. This is why you must brush your teeth twice a day and floss regularly.
Gum disease, which is clinically referred to as periodontal disease, is caused by bacteria infiltrating the gums, causing them to become infected and inflamed. This infection can give you a bad taste in your mouth and persistent bad breath. If you notice symptoms of gum disease, see your dentist right away as this can impact your overall health.
Pre-Existing Medical Conditions
Your mouth can provide insights into your overall health. People with diabetes, sinus conditions, acid reflux, liver or kidney disease, or many other conditions may have persistent bad breath. If your dentist has ruled out oral health issues, make an appointment with your healthcare provider to figure out the root cause of your halitosis.
How Can I Prevent Bad Breath?
The easiest way to prevent bad breath is to brush and floss regularly and make healthy lifestyle choices such as drinking lots of water, maintaining a healthy weight, and choosing healthy foods.
Your oral hygiene regimen should include taking care of your tongue, too. If you stick out your tongue and see a white or brown coating on it, you have a layer of bad-breath-causing bacteria. This is easily removed with your toothbrush or a tongue scraper. Mouthwash can neutralize and temporarily mask bad breath, but this only addresses the symptom, not the cause.
Schedule Regular Appointments With Your Dentist
If you’re in the Worcester, MA area and you’re concerned about your bad breath, schedule an appointment to see any of the experienced associates at Russell Street Dental Associates. Regular checkups help us spot any potential problems early and address them before they become bigger ones. Call (508) 687-6579 or schedule an appointment online.