Bad Breath Causes and Treatments

Bad breath is something all of us have worried about at some time. Whether it’s leaning in for a kiss or speaking during an important business meeting, we always want to make a good impression – and bad breath can definitely tarnish that impression.

If you’re constantly worried about bad breath, you’re not alone. Chronic bad breath, also called halitosis, is a common problem. Understanding what causes your bad breath will help determine what you can do to prevent it.

Morning breath is caused by reduced saliva flow during sleep. Other types of bad breath can be caused by poor oral hygiene, gum disease, dry mouth, tobacco use, dieting, dehydration and some medical conditions, including sinus infections and diabetes. Even the foods you eat like garlic, onions and peppers can cause bad breath.

Also, any problems with your mouth, such as gum disease, dry mouth (Xerostomia), or other dental conditions — like cavities — may also cause persistent bad breath.

One of the easiest ways to treat bad breath is to brush your teeth at least twice a day (after every meal is better) and flossing once a day. Also be sure to brush your tongue, especially the back areas. It can really make a big difference in how clean your mouth feels and smells.

If you can’t brush after meals, try using a sugar-free gum instead. This can remove food particles from your mouth. In addition, it can temporarily hide any residual smells that are left over from fragrant meals.

Also, if you wear dentures, be sure to remove them at night and clean them thoroughly before replacing them the next morning.

By following these tips, you should be able to control your bad breath and confidently meet with your colleagues, or more importantly, lean in for that special kiss.

-Dr. Taj

For more information, be sure to visit me or my staff at one of the three locations in Davis Lake and Concord Mills, go to my website at, or watch my Dental Minute videos that deal with bad breath.

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