Problems with Bad Breath?
Whether you call it bad breath or halitosis, it’s an unpleasant condition that’s cause for embarrassment. A thorough exam by Dr. Fitch 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.
If you don’t brush and floss daily, particles of food remain in the mouth, collecting bacteria, which can cause bad breath. Food that collects between the teeth, on the tongue and around the gums can rot, leaving an unpleasant odor.
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. Tobacco products cause bad breath. If you use tobacco, Dr. Fitch can provide you with tips on kicking the habit.
If you don’t brush and floss daily, particles of food remain in the mouth, collecting bacteria, which can cause bad breath. Food that collects between the teeth, on the tongue and around the gums can rot, leaving an unpleasant odor. Dentures that are not cleaned properly can also harbor odor-causing bacteria and food particles.
One of the warning signs of periodontal (gum) disease is persistent bad breath or a bad taste in the mouth. Periodontal disease is caused by plaque, the sticky, colorless film of bacteria that constantly forms on teeth. The bacteria create toxins that irritate the gums. In the advanced stage of the disease, the gums, bone and other structures that support the teeth become damaged. With regular dental checkups, Dr. Fitch can detect and treat periodontal disease early.
Schedule regular dental visits for a professional cleaning and checkup. Regular checkups will allow Dr. Fitch to detect any problems such as periodontal (gum) disease, a dry mouth or other disorders that may be the cause.
Regardless of what may be the cause, good oral hygiene is essential. Brush twice a day with fluoride toothpaste to remove food debris and plaque. Clean between your teeth daily with floss or interdental cleaners. Brush your tongue, too. If you wear dentures, be sure to remove them at night and clean them thoroughly before replacing them the next morning.