Halitosis (Bad Breath)

We understand the social & personal implications that halitosis can have on our patients. We have created this to bring solutions to this potentially embarrassing and, for the most part, treatable condition. More information can be found here.

Halitosis, also known as bad breath, is an unpleasant condition that can be associated with embarrassment, affecting an individual’s self-esteem, inevitably having social implications as well. As your dentist, our focus is on determining the cause, & then working with you to find the proper treatment regimen to eliminate the condition.

Diet

What you eat affects the air you exhale. The types of food you may contribute to displeasing odor. The foul odor is usually caused by the breakdown of proteins by bacteria in the mouth. Specifically, garlic, onions, & cheese are common culprits. Once these kinds of foods are absorbed in the bloodstream, they are transferred to the lungs where it is expelled which in turn results in the malodor. This will continue until the body eliminates the food. Dieters may develop unpleasant breath from infrequent eating.

Poor Oral Hygiene

Not brushing & flossing-, allowing food particles to accumulate, even rot, on/in between teeth, on the tongue & around the gums, leading to the collection of bacteria. Most of the compounds that cause bad breath are the waste placement of flowable composite filling material to coat the grooves produces of bacteria. Dental plaque accumulation (above and below the gum line and on the tongue) can tip the scales in favor of the odor-causing bacteria.

Xerostomia/Dry Mouth

Saliva is necessary to cleanse the mouth & remove particles that may cause malodors. The reduction of saliva may be caused me a number of things. It is, in fact, a side effect of many medications. Additionally, age, damaged salivary glands, mouth-breathing, chemo & radiation therapy, & some autoimmune diseases can contribute to dry mouth as well.

Tobacco

Tobacco causes halitosis in a number of ways. Smoking & chewing tobacco inhibits saliva flow, resulting in dry mouth. Also, by affecting the small blood vessels that provide nutrients to the gum & bone that support the teeth, tobacco also contributes to periodontal disease. Periodontal disease is characterized by pocketing. These areas surrounding teeth are more susceptible to bacteria which cause halitosis.

Additionally, tobacco residue can adhere to the cheeks, teeth & tongue, which itself leaves an unpleasant odor. Also, sinus problems are made more sever with the use of tobacco, which due to things like post-nasal drip, can then lead to foul-smelling breath.

How do I quit smoking?

1. Set a date

  • Stick to it
  • Choose a “low stress” time to quit

2. Enlist support

  • Family, friends and coworkers.

3. Ask About Nicotine Replacement Therapy

  • Using medicine can double your chances of quitting for good.

4. Remove tobacco and tobacco paraphernalia from your home, office and car

5. Seek tobacco-free environments to curve your temptations

6. Exercise

  • It may make you feel better about yourself and your decision to quit smoking

7. Anticipate problems and have a realistic plan to deal with challenges.

When you crave tobacco: 4D’s

  • Delay—craving will pass in 5–10 minutes
  • Drink water—it will help to wash the toxins from your body
  • Do something else—distract yourself by being active.
  • Deep breathing—deep inhalations and exhalations are relaxing.