West Seattle Dentist: How Breath Can Turn Bad

A Common Symptom of Common Causes

Bad breath is a common enough symptom that anyone can suffer from it. It is estimated that 1 in 4 people have bad breath on a regular basis.after tooth decay and gum disease, it is the third most common reason that people seek dental attention. In most cases it originates from the gums and tongue. Poor oral hygiene is the usual culprit. The odor is sulfurous, caused by wastes from bacteria in the mouth, the decay of food particles, other debris in the mouth. Medically called halitosis, the condition can be psychologically distressing, especially if the bad breath is chronic in nature.

What are the common causes of halitosis?

Tobacco can not only cause mal odors but it can increase gum disease risk which in itself can cause odors. Likewise, some foods caught between teeth like onions and garlic can also cause bad breath, and even if they’ve been digested, their products can travel the bloodstream to the lungs and out the breath. Even fasting and a low-carb diet can produce halitosis, due to the breakdown of fats producing the strong aroma of ketones. If there is dry mouth, the lack of saliva encourages growth of odor-causing bacteria.

Other causes of odors are from mouth, nose, and throat infections, some cancers, liver failure, and reflux disease, as well as certain medications like nitrates, chemo drugs, some tranquilizers, and large dose vitamins. There may be certain rare conditions that can bring about the same bad odors, such as ketoacidosis from diabetes, bronchiectasis and aspiration pneumonia, and bowel obstruction.

Improved dental hygiene and quitting smoking can often remove the issue. The dentist will advise you to improve your oral hygiene practices – brushing, including flossing and mouth rinses. You may have to start tongue brushing, hydrate often with drinking water, and avoid certain foods. Keep your dentures clean. See if you might have a loose or cracked filling or an open root fragment that the dentist can treat. But if bad breath still persists, a visit to the doctor is the next best thing to do.

Battling Bad Breath in West Seattle

If you think you have bad breath and not sure what’s causing it, see your West Seattle dentist right away. Halitosis may be a common symptom but it is treatable one as soon as we know the causative factor or factors.