Causes of Bad Breath (that a Dentist Can Help Fix)
Human beings associate memories with smells. So it’s not a surprise that we feel uncomfortable around bad breath. When we are close to someone, the last thing we want them to think about is our breath. But bad breath can happen to anyone, and when it does, it is often a priority to try to find a way to fix it.
Some causes of bad breath have to be controlled by lifestyle changes that you make on your own. But others can be helped by visiting a dentist. The following are some of the different possible causes of bad breath, and information on which causes can be treated by a dental visit here at Dental Concepts.
What Causes Bad Breath?
When we talk about “Bad Breath” we are typically talking about bad breath that occurs fairly regularly. That is, some people get bad breath in the morning but it goes away when they brush their teeth. Others can get bad breath after eating foul-smelling foods, but within a few hours (or after brushing teeth), that smell goes away as well.
While those situations can be stressful, there is nothing to treat. Morning breath is practically unpreventable, and the occasional smelly meal is unlikely to be a recurring problem. However, bad breath can also be caused by both dental and medical issues, and these are often treatable.
Some causes of bad breath require someone other than a dentist. These include:
- Acid Reflux – Acid reflux and GERD can cause a strong smell. These are best diagnosed and treated by a medical professional.
- Tonsil Stones – Tonsil stones can build up in the tonsils. Ear, nose, and throat doctors can remove tonsil stones and possibly provide treatment information.
- Postnasal Drip – Post-nasal drip can also lead to foul-smelling breath. Allergy medications and other treatments can be recommended by a doctor.
Smoking can also lead to unwanted breath, and of course, diet can cause recurring bad breath if you frequently eat foods like onions and garlic.
Other causes of bad breath, however, can be treated by a dentist. These include:
- Plaque – Plaque is bacteria, and too much plaque can lead to consistent bad breath.
- Infections – Dental infections of all kinds be breeding grounds for odor particles.
- Cavities – Cavities (dental caries) can also harbor food and bacteria, which smells over time.
- Dentures – Unclean dentures can cause foul-smelling bacteria to sit on your teeth.
- Chronic Dry Mouth – Low salivary production allows odor-causing particles to grow.
- Rare Oral Cancers – Though rare, untreated oral cancers can also cause foul scents.
All of these different issues can be treated by a dentist. Some only require cleaning or fillings. Others, like chronic dry mouth, can be diagnosed and treated by our dentists here at Dental Concepts. If you or someone close to you in or near the Salinas area has been struggling with bad breath, come visit our dental office today. We can often figure out the cause of the issue, clean your teeth, and improve your breath – or tell you if your issue is unlikely to be a dental one. Call today to get started.