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What Causes Bad Breath?

Bad breath or halitosis is usually caused by poor dental health habits or due to underlying health issues. Unhealthy lifestyle, food habits also result in halitosis. This condition can be embarrassing often and could lead to unpleasant experiences.


Poor dental habits can often lead to halitosis. If you don’t brush regularly and don’t floss regularly, food particles will remain stuck in between teeth. This leads to bacterial growth and plaque buildup. The bad breath could be due to this high level of bacteria in your mouth, especially between teeth and due to plaque buildup on the teeth and food accumulation in and around the gum line.  To reduce bad odor, brush and floss regularly, use antibacterial oral rinse which will reduce bacteria in the mouth.


Often certain food you eat can cause bad breath. Brushing, flossing or antibacterial oral rinse or mouthwash covers up the odor temporarily. The odor will return until the effects of food are completely gone from your body. Food with strong odors like onion, garlic, and certain meat products, when digested will be carried to your lungs by the circulatory system and will be released as you breathe. The odor will stay until the food is completely digested and removed from your body. To reduce bad breath due to food habits, reducing odor releasing food could help.


Gum disease or periodontitis could be another major reason for bad breath. Gum disease is often caused by plaque buildup on teeth and between gum and teeth. Bad taste in your mouth is also a sign that you may have gum disease. If gum disease is left untreated, the bacteria will eventually damage your gums and jaw bone. Consult with dentist if you suspect you may have gum disease, to identify and treat those conditions.


Poorly maintained dental appliances, or poor fitting dental appliance like dentures may cause food to accumulate between denture and gum area and may lead to bad breath. Dry mouth, Smoking, chewing tobacco, or other medical conditions like pneumonia or bronchitis, chronic sinus infection, diabetes, liver issues, kidney disease, acid reflux, yeast infection are some of the other reasons that could lead to bad breath or halitosis.

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