Bad breath, or as dentists refer to it, halitosis, is something that most everyone deals with on a daily basis. However, particularly bad breath is not something that is a normal occurrence. If you feel as if your breath becomes worse after taking reasonable actions to remedy it, such as regular brushing and flossing, there may be a problem that you need to handle. The following could be causes for halitosis:
Many people deal with dry mouth for a variety of reasons. Some people have dry mouth due to medical conditions, such as diabetes. Others have it due to certain types of medications they are taking. Alcohol consumption can also cause dry mouth, as it is very dehydrating to the body. Since saliva is a natural breath freshener, the lack of it in your mouth can cause the breath to be particularly bad. The lack of saliva can prevent oxygen from getting into the mouth and can lead to bad breath.
Post Nasal Drip
If you have been sick with a cold, you may notice that your breath is less fresh than normal. Postnasal drip causes mucus to build and can fuel bacteria growth, which can cause particularly bad halitosis. A sore throat caused by postnasal drip can cause even more bacteria growth and leads to halitosis. Be sure to rinse your mouth and throat with an antibacterial mouthwash several times a day when you have a cold to kill the bad bacteria.
High Protein Diet
If you have a diet that is fairly high in protein, such as a low carb or ketogenic diet, you may experience bad breath more often. With the popularity of these diets for weight loss, many people have to deal with the unpleasant side effect of halitosis. This type of diet can cause the mouth to develop an odor because of the additional breakdown of protein in the body. The bad smell stems from the additional bacteria that is derived from the protein. This converts certain amino acids into a chemical that has higher levels of hydrogen sulfide. This chemical has a scent that is similar to rotten eggs, which is what can contribute to halitosis. It is important to note that this process takes place in everyone, but is particularly exacerbated in high protein diets.
To combat halitosis, be sure to take regular daily measures to keep your mouth clean. In addition to brushing and flossing, rinse your mouth with mouthwash and scrape your tongue with a tongue scraper. This will help remove extra bacteria lingering in the mouth. If you need help with producing more saliva during the day, you can chew sugar free gum to help. Above all, visit the dentist regularly to ensure that you do not have an underlying medical issue that is causing your halitosis. Contact a dentist, such as Killar Curt DDS, for more information.