Whether you call it bad breath or halitosis, it’s an unpleasant condition that’s cause for embarrassment. Some people with bad breath aren’t even aware there’s a problem. If you’re concerned about bad breath, see your dentist. He or she can help identify the cause and, if it’s due to an oral condition, develop a treatment plan to help eliminate it.
What you eat affects the air you exhale. Certain foods, such
as garlic and onions, contribute to objectionable breath odor. Once the
food is absorbed into the bloodstream, it is transferred to the lungs,
where it is expelled. Brushing, flossing and mouthwash will only mask
the odor temporarily. Odors continue until the body eliminates the food.
Dieters may develop unpleasant breath from infrequent eating.
Bad breath can also be caused by dry mouth (xerostomia), which occurs
when the flow of saliva decreases. Saliva is necessary to cleanse the
mouth and remove particles that may cause odor. Dry mouth may be caused
by various medications, salivary gland problems or continuously
breathing through the mouth. If you suffer from dry mouth, your dentist
may prescribe anartificial saliva, or suggest using sugarless candy and
increasing your fluid intake.
Tobacco products cause bad breath. If you use tobacco, ask your dentist for tips on kicking the habit.
Bad breath may be the sign of a medical disorder, such as a
local infection in the respiratory tract, chronic sinusitis, postnasal
drip, chronic bronchitis, diabetes, gastrointestinal disturbance, liver
or kidney ailment. If your dentist determines that your mouth is
healthy, you may be referred to your family doctor or a specialist to
determine the cause of bad breath.
Maintaining good oral health is essential to reducing bad
breath. Schedule regular dental visits for a professional cleaning and
checkup. If you think you have constant bad breath, keep a log of the
foods you eat and make a list of medications you take. Some medications
may play a role in creating mouth odors. Let your dentist know if you've
had any surgery or illness since your last appointment.
Brush twice a day with fluoride toothpaste to remove food
debris and plaque. Brush your tongue, too. Once a day, use floss or an
interdental cleaner to clean between teeth.
Mouthwashes are generally cosmetic and do not have a
long-lasting effect on bad breath. If you must constantly use a breath
freshener to hide unpleasant mouth odor, see your dentist. If you need
extra help in controlling plaque, your dentist may recommend using a
special antimicrobial mouth rinse. A fluoride mouth rinse, used along
with brushing and flossing, can help prevent tooth decay.
Article Source: http://www.ada.org/3044.aspx?currentTab=1
If you live in the Niles area and are looking for a dentist, please visit our website for more information: http://www.hb-dentistry.com
Our office is located at 9101 Greenwood Avenue, Suite 302, Niles, IL. 60714
Call us at 847-296-4030.
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