Is bad breath holding you back? Also known as halitosis, bad breath is unpleasant and embarrassing and can inhibit you in social or business interactions. All of us suffer from bad breath from time to time, especially in the morning. But there are numerous reasons why your breath smells, and it may not just be the onion rings you had with lunch.
Some common reasons for bad breath include:
- Poor oral hygiene
- Periodontal (gum) disease
- Tooth decay
- Tobacco use
- Prescription medications
- Medical conditions
Your Novato family dentist wants you to be informed about the reasons for bad breath and how to eliminate it. While there may be a medical reason for chronic bad breath, there are some easy lifestyle changes you can make to minimize the risk.
- Don’t smoke: While there is a multitude of reasons to quit the bad habit of smoking, one of the more obvious ones is to devoid yourself of the smell externally (clothes and body) and internally (your mouth).
- Don’t eat foods with strong odors: Avoid onions and garlic, especially before or during an important business meeting or another event where you need to interact with others. Onions and garlic leave a strong odor because they contain elements that make their way into your bloodstream and travel to your lungs until you finally breathe them out.
- Do floss: Flossing isn’t only necessary for your oral health to prevent cavities, but it dislodges food particles that would be otherwise stuck between your teeth, trapping bacteria and causing a distinctive odor.
- Do chew sugarless gum: If you can’t brush your teeth immediately after eating, try rinsing out your mouth with water or chewing sugarless gum about 20 minutes after mealtime. Chewing stimulates saliva production, which combats bacteria and cavities that lead to bad breath.
Chronic breath is not only unpleasant, but it may also be an indication of a more serious problem like periodontal disease. Please call your Novato family dentist to arrange an appointment. You may be surprised that’s all that’s needed is a thorough dental cleaning to refresh your smile.