Bad breath is something most people hope to avoid at all costs. It can be incredibly embarrassing, and can make you feel insecure about holding conversations with friends and acquaintances. It can be even worse if you aren’t aware that you suffer from bad breath – those around you may be embarrassed to say anything, leading to a very awkward situation.
There are several different things that can cause bad breath, many of which can be avoided once you know what to look out for. Take a look below at 5 reasons why you may have bad breath.
- The Food You Eat
As the food that you eat passes through your body, it has to be broken down and digested. This process obviously begins in your mouth and works its way down. Once the food has passed into your bloodstream it is expelled by your lungs when you breath. If you eat or drink something with a strong odor, such as onions, garlic, or coffee, you will have to wait until it has completely passed through your body before the smell is gone from your breath. Brushing, flossing, mouthwash, and gum all simply mask the odor.
- Poor Oral Hygiene
Daily brushing and flossing is essential to having fresh smelling breath. When you avoid these things, food particles remain in your mouth, promoting bacterial growth on your teeth and gums, which causes bad breath. In order to maintain good oral health, it’s important to brush at least twice a day, floss daily, and visit your dentist for a professional cleaning twice a year. Using mouthwash can also help to reduce bacteria in the most hard to reach places in your mouth.
- Smoking and Using Tobacco Products
Smoking and using other tobacco products such as chewing tobacco are a major cause of bad breath. Not only that, but these products may stain your teeth, cause damage to your taste buds, and irritate your gums. This can eventually lead to gum disease or oral cancer in addition to your bad breath. It’s best to avoid these products at all costs.
- Gum Disease
Gum disease is caused by the buildup of plaque on teeth, which can be a factor in bad breath. Often, bad breath is a warning sign of gingivitis or periodontal disease, which are the two forms of gum disease. If you aren’t aware that you have gum disease but are suffering from bad breath, it would be in your best interest to visit your dentist for a cleaning and exam to find out if that may be the problem.
- Internal Diseases
There are a many different diseases that cause bad breath. Everything from chronic bronchitis to diabetes to liver disease could be a factor. If you suspect that you have bad breath but can’t determine an obvious cause, it might be time to visit your doctor. They will be able to determine if there’s an internal cause for your external issue.
As you can see, fixing your bad breath isn’t always as simple as popping a breath mint. However, once you determine the source of your bad breath, whether it’s a bad choice in food or a physical ailment, you will be better prepared to fix the issue. To stay on top of your oral health and keep your breath as fresh as possible, brush and floss every day, drink plenty of water, and chew sugarless gum. While this may not “cure” you if you are dealing with a serious disease, it can certainly help to mask the problem.
To read more on this topic, download our free eBook "7 Step Checklist to Determine if You Have Gum Disease".