Bad breath is not only embarrassing, but it can also be a sign of an underlying oral health problem. So what causes it and how do you get rid of bad breath?
What causes bad breath?
Having a dry mouth
A lack of saliva means bacteria can thrive and this can cause bad breath.
A build up of plaque and bacteria can cause smelly breath and a bad taste in your mouth.
Poor oral hygiene
If you don’t floss daily and brush your teeth twice daily, food debris can get stuck between teeth and bacteria builds up.
Eating strong smelling foods
Strong smelling foods like onions and garlic can make the breath smell for days. There’s a reason you avoid them on date night!
Having a sinus infection
A sinus infection can cause the breath to smell.
Having a digestive problem
Acid reflux, Crohn’s Disease, and Coeliac Disease can all cause bad breath.
How do you know if you have bad breath?
Often, people with bad breath can’t smell it. You may notice people pulling away from you when you are talking to them. If you want to check for bad breath, try:
- Licking the inside of your wrist and sniffing it. If it smells bad, it’s a good indicator that you have bad breath.
- Checking your tongue in the mirror. If it’s got a yellow or white coating, this could be a sign that you have bad breath.
- Asking someone. Ask a friend to be brutally honest with you about your breath.
Will mouthwash help me get rid of bad breath?
Using mouthwash can mask bad breath, but that can cause its own problems. If you’re masking the problem, you aren’t really treating it.
How to get rid of bad breath
Try these strategies for fresher breath:
Use a tongue scraper
This will help remove any odour-causing bacteria or debris from the tongue.
Drink plenty of water
If you’re hydrated, you’ll produce plenty of saliva which contains plenty of healthy bacteria for a healthier mouth.
Clean between your teeth
Just in case flossing and brushing aren’t doing the job, invest in a tooth cleaner to remove plaque from those hard to reach places.
Talk to your dentist
Don’t be embarrassed to talk to your dentist about bad breath. It’s their job to spot more serious oral health problems early so they can be treated. Telling them about your bad breath may give them a good clue about what is going on.
For more articles on oral health and the products you need for a bright, healthy smile, check out the rest of our blog.