Causes of Bad Breath
Bad breath can have causes that don’t need medical intervention. But it’s crucial to nail down the root of the problem in case you need your dentist’s help.
Food and Drink (mention new diet)
Food and drink are major contributors to bad breath. Onions, garlic, dairy, canned tuna, and horseradish are the top five culprits of food-related bad breath. If you eat a lot of these, you might consider cutting back to reduce the impact on your breath. These foods affect your breath twice. Once, when you eat it and again after it enters your bloodstream and comes out through your lungs.
Have you just started a new diet? Look into the foods that the diet is restricting and allowing. The Keto diet, very low carb and high fats, is notorious for producing foul breath.
Coffee and alcohol cause bad breath because they create a favorable environment for bacteria to grow. These drinks also make your mouth dry. The decrease in saliva production causes bacteria to linger and start to smell.
Tobacco products put you at a higher risk for bad breath for a few reasons. First, they dry out your mouth, and without saliva, you can’t wash away bacteria. Second, the stale smoke smell tends to linger in your lungs and come out later. Finally, tobacco users are twice as likely to develop gum disease. Not only is this another cause of bad breath, but gum disease affects your teeth and bones, too.
Some medications make your mouth dry, leading to bad breath. Other medications release chemicals inside your body that come out through your breath later. Look into or talk to your doctor about the medicines you’re taking to see if they have a side effect of bad breath. If they do, ask if there is another medication you can try that wouldn’t cause the foul smell.
Poor Oral Hygiene
Poor oral hygiene is a significant contributor to bad breath because it leads to gum disease and tooth decay. But also, without brushing, flossing, and using mouthwash, bacteria will linger in your mouth and start to stink. Your mouth is wet and warm, which is the perfect environment for bacteria to grow, and it smells at all stages from the beginning to its transformation to plaque and tartar.
Gum Disease and Tooth Decay
Gum disease and tooth decay cause bad breath that will need medical intervention. When your practice poor oral hygiene long enough, your gums will become infected with the multiplying bacteria, and eventually, your teeth will decay and fall out. Besides having an unpleasant odor, your teeth and gums will hurt, your smile will suffer, and you’ll have a harder time talking and eating.