More than half of the adult population has reported that they presently have or have had in the past Halitosis (bad breath).
Bad breath is a very common problem and there are many different causes. Persistent bad breath is usually caused by the smelly gases released by the bacteria that coat your teeth and gums. Food debris that gets caught between the teeth or on the tongue will rot and can sometimes cause an unpleasant smell. So correct and regular brushing is very important to keep your breath smelling fresh.
However, strong foods like garlic, coffee and onions can add to the problem. The bacteria on our teeth and gums (plaque) also cause gum disease and dental decay. One of the warning signs of gum disease is that you always have bad breath or a bad taste in your mouth. Again, your dentist or hygienist will be able to see and treat the problem during your regular check-ups. The earlier the problems are found, the more effective the treatment will be.
Bad breath can also be caused by some medical problems. Dry mouth (xerostomia) is a condition that affects the flow of saliva. This causes more bacteria to build up in the mouth and this leads to bad breath. Dry mouth may be caused by some medicines, salivary gland problems or by continually breathing through the mouth instead of the nose. Older people may produce less saliva, causing further problems. If you suffer from dry mouth, your dentist may be able to recommend or prescribe an artificial saliva product. Or your dentist may be able to suggest other ways of dealing with the problem.
Treating Bad Breath
The key element in treating and curing bad breath is determining the cause. A thorough review of your medical and dental health status starts the process. Once that is completed, a thorough examination is performed. After the likely cause is determined, appropriate treatment is started. For example, if excessive plaque and calculus has built up, inadequate oral hygiene and infrequent professional dental treatments are likely to be the culprits. Your dentist, together with the hygienist, will set up one or more sessions to provide periodontal treatments, and then institute a regime for you to follow at home to keep your mouth as clean and fresh as possible. Seek professional dental advice to solve any problems you may have with bad breath.
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