Bad Breath

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Home Oral and Dental Care. Bad breath can have many different causes, from smoking cigarettes to the medications you take to the foods you eat. There are, however, some small changes and at-home treatments you can try as bad breath remedies before consulting your doctor. When determining how to get rid of bad breath, one of the easiest ways is to ensure that you have great dental hygiene.

Brush and floss every day and twice a day if possible to reduce odorous bacteria in the mouth.

Association between halitosis and mouth breathing in children

Though skipping flossing may be tempting, it removes bits of food caught between teeth, which can cause bacterial growth and halitosis when ignored. And here are some more reasons to floss every day. You should also replace your toothbrush every two to three months so the bristles do not weaken over time and clean your teeth less effectively. After brushing your teeth, use your toothbrush to brush your tongue as well.

Or, invest in a tongue scraper as one of the more high-tech bad breath remedies.

A common cause of halitosis is a dry mouth. The slowing of saliva production encourages the growth of bacteria that causes your breath to smell, which can help explain why you have horrible breath in the morning.

Alleviate dry mouth by hydrating often, especially when you wake up, or during and after exercising. Myth 3: If you breathe into your hand, you'll know when you have bad breath. When you breathe, you don't use your throat the same way you do when you talk. When you talk, you tend to bring out the odors from the back of your mouth where bad breath originates , which simply breathing doesn't do. Also, because we tend to get used to our own smells, it's hard for a person to tell if he or she has bad breath.

If you're concerned about bad breath, make sure you're taking care of your teeth and mouth properly. Some sugar-free gums and mints can temporarily mask odors, too. Reviewed by: Steven Dowshen, MD. Larger text size Large text size Regular text size.

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Bad Breath (Halitosis): Causes, Symptoms, and Diagnosis

Food, bacteria, and dental plaque can collect in the pockets, causing a strong odor. Unusual breath odor can be a symptom of some diseases, including kidney disease, diabetes, and gastroesophageal reflex disorder GERD. GERD is a relatively common cause of halitosis. If you have kidney or liver failure or diabetes, your breath may smell fishy.

Your dentist will smell your breath and ask you questions about your problem. They may recommend you schedule an appointment for the morning, before you brush your teeth.

The Bad Breath Doctor

You can expect to answer questions regarding how often you brush and floss, the kinds of food you eat, and any allergies or diseases you may have. Tell your doctor how often you snore, what medications you take, and when the problem started.

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Your doctor will smell your mouth, nose, and tongue to diagnose your problem. If breath odor is due to a plaque buildup, a dental cleaning may solve the problem. A deep dental cleaning may be necessary if you have periodontal disease. Treating underlying medical problems, such as a sinus infection or kidney disease, can also help improve breath odor. Your dentist may recommend that you use an artificial saliva product and drink plenty of water if dry mouth causes your odor problem. You should brush your teeth two or more times each day.

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Floss daily, making sure to get in between all of your teeth. Use antimicrobial mouthwash daily to kill bacteria. Brushing your tongue with a toothbrush or tongue scraper can also help remove bacteria. Staying hydrated can often help to eliminate or prevent breath odor.

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Drink water to wash away food particles and keep your mouth moist. Quitting smoking if you smoke can also help keep your mouth moist and free of odor.


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There are several routines that can prevent breath odor. Clean your dentures, mouth guards, and retainers daily.