The thought of having bad breath can be mortifying, but it is often tricky to know if your breath isn’t fresh and pleasant. Many signs can alert you, but one simple test is to lick the inside of your wrist and sniff it. If it smells unpleasant, there’s a good chance your breath might be bad. Alternatively, ask a relative or very close friend for their honest opinion.
Why Do People Get Bad Breath?
There are lots of reasons why you might develop bad breath, and often it’s due to eating strong foods like onions and garlic, and the problem is temporary. Other times, pieces of food can become trapped between your teeth, and if you fail to floss properly, they will gradually begin to rot. Dental plaque, a sticky biofilm that builds up over your tooth surfaces, contains bacteria that cause gum disease and tooth decay. If you have untreated dental problems in Newcastle, it can easily cause bad breath. Another sign is noticing you have a nasty taste in your mouth or that a tooth has begun to ache.
What Else Can Cause Bad Breath?
Sometimes bad breath is caused by a problem called xerostomia or dry mouth. If you have dry mouth, it means you cannot produce enough saliva to keep your mouth fresh and comfortable. The drier conditions allow harmful bacteria to thrive and build up, increasing the risk of dental problems. Some medicines can cause xerostomia in Clarington, and as you get older, you may find you produce less saliva. Other medical conditions can cause bad breath, such as respiratory infections, liver and kidney problems or diabetes.
Another common cause of bad breath is smoking. Besides making your breath smell unpleasant, smoking can cause loss of taste; it stains your teeth and can irritate your gums. People who smoke are more likely to have gum disease, and there is a greater risk of developing oral cancer.
How We Can Help
If you are concerned about having bad breath, it’s best to book a visit to see our Courtice dentist. Here at West Bowmanville Family Dental, we can carefully examine your mouth and give you an honest opinion on whether your breath smells bad. When we check your mouth, we can discover if you have any dental issues like tooth decay or gum disease that might cause your breath to smell, and if needed, we can discuss suitable treatments to remedy these problems. If the cause of your bad breath isn’t clear, we may suggest you see your family doctor in case an undiagnosed medical condition causes it. If the bad breath is due to smoking, the only real way to cure it is to quit!
When prescription medications are causing dry mouth, it can be worth discussing the problem with your GP. They might prescribe a different medicine or adjust the dosage, but you must always check with them first and never stop taking medications without professional advice. Our dentist can prescribe artificial saliva. There are other things you can try as well, such as sipping water frequently, chewing sugar-free gum to stimulate saliva production, or sucking on ice chips.
Preventing Bad Breath
When you have good dental health, maintaining it is relatively straightforward. Ensure you brush your teeth at least twice daily and especially last thing at night using fluoride toothpaste. Don’t forget to floss daily, and if you find it tricky, ask us for help and advice or try using interdental brushes or a water pik. Visit us regularly, and most healthy adults need to see us twice a year for checkups and professional dental cleanings.