Bad breath is a condition that can happen to anyone at any time. For some patients, bad breath is temporary, and caused by certain foods or beverages they may have consumed, such as coffee or garlic. However, there are many individuals who deal with bad breath on a daily basis. Bad breath, also referred to as halitosis, is a condition that can become chronic. Finding the cause of the condition is the first step in determining how to treat it.
What causes chronic bad breath?
Most patients can expect bad breath after consumption of certain foods and beverages, but this is normal. Patients who have persistent bad breath will want to consider the causes of the condition to determine the best treatment option. Bad breath may be caused by:
- Smoking of cigarettes or chewing of tobacco
- Poor oral health habits causing plaque and bacteria
- Sinus infections, post-nasal drip, and other health problems
- Chronic dry mouth, or xerostomia
- Poorly cleaned dentures or orthodontia
- Conditions surrounding pregnancy such as morning sickness
- Certain medications that may cause bad breath as a side effect
- Certain supplements, such as fish oil
How to tame bad breath
There are many ways in which patients can address bad breath:
- Consider using a mouthwash to help freshen the breath throughout the day
- Chewing of sugarless gums or sucking candies to keep saliva flowing
- Brushing and flossing after every meal to remove food particles and reduce plaque
- Consider changing medications that make bad breath severe
- Brushing the tongue, where lots of bacteria can reside
- Treating conditions such as periodontal disease if it has been diagnosed
Diagnosing bad breath
There are no specific tests that are done to determine if a patient has chronic bad breath. In most cases, the condition is self-reported by the patient as a problem, and is then evaluated by a dentist to determine the exact cause.
Contact Dr. Michael Westman of Racine, WI today!
Patients in and around the community who are considering quality dental care are urged to book a consultation visit with Dr. Michael Westman and his team at 4944 Charles Street. Call (262) 639-7000 today to request an appointment.