No more bad breath!

It can be difficult to check whether your own breath is bad! Here are some pointers to help you out, as well as advice on how to remedy the situation.

Bad breath, or halitosis, affects nearly 65% of the population. Fortunately, in most cases it is transitory. Just think about morning breath that goes away by simply brushing your teeth.

Do you have bad breath?

It could be difficult to determine for ourselves if we have bad breath.

You may suspect that you have bad breath if:

  • you frequently have a bad taste in your mouth
  • people keep their distance when you talk to them
  • somebody mentions that you have bad breath
  • your gums are red, swollen and bleed easily. There might be pus
  • people frequently offer you mints or chewing gum
  • it frequently occurs that your mouth is dry and your saliva is viscous

If you have any doubt, do not hesitate to ask. People around you will appreciate that you take care of your oral health

What causes bad breath?

Most bad breath problems originate from the mouth. Halitosis is caused by degradation of the bacterial plaque, debris and food particles. This degradation generates smelly gases that get mixed up with the breath and give it this bad smell.

Many conditions predispose to bad breath:

  • deficient oral hygiene
  • the presence of cavities or defective restorations
  • an accumulation of food particles between the teeth
  • a mouth infection such as a cold sore
  • smoking (tobacco smoke mixes with other mouth odors to create an unpleasant smell)
  • a decrease in the production of saliva or its effectiveness, and
  • inflammation of the gums (gingivitis or periodontitis)

Other reasons that might cause bad breath that do not originate in the mouth are:

  • infections, especially in the lungs, throat or sinuses
  • uncontrolled diabetes can cause the formation of acetone when the utilization of proteins and fats as an energy source is not optimal
  • kidney failure can give the breath a fishy smell
  • liver disease
  • gastrointestinal disorders such as reflux
  • allergic or chronic rhinitis, and
  • fasting, for the same reason as for diabetes, gives the breath an acetone odor

How can you prevent and treat bad breath?

To restore or keep a fresh breath, you must take adequate dental hygiene measures:

  • Brush your teeth and your tongue after each meal.
  • Use dental floss at least once a day.
  • Have your cavities treated and your defective restorations fixed.
  • Quit smoking.
  • Visit your dentist at least once or twice a year.

Do you like garlic?

Some food, such as onions, garlic, cauliflower and coffee, may cause temporary bad breath. After eating them, these foods are quickly absorbed into the blood, and part of the smell released by the mouth comes from the air exhaled by the lungs. As for the others, you can finish your meal by eating fresh parsley, crunching coffee beans or sucking on a clove. Without eliminating the bad smell of your breath, this may reduce it.

If your bad breath is caused by dental problems such as cavities, see your dentist to treat the problem.

Does your breath wake you up in the morning?

Morning breath is a reality for many people. Normally, it goes away after a while. During the night, the mouth produces less saliva. Thus, bacteria and debris may produce more odors. Generally, rinsing your mouth with water, talking, drinking orange juice or having breakfast activates your salivary glands thereby reducing morning breath.

To reduce morning breath:

  • Brush and floss your teeth before going to bed. This way, you will reduce the amount of bacteria in your mouth.
  • If you wear false teeth, remove them before you go to sleep. Clean and disinfect them regularly. Brush your palate, the inside of your cheeks and tongue daily.
  • Drink a glass of water before going to bed to reduce dryness in the mouth.
  • After breakfast, floss and brush your teeth and your tongue.
  • You can use a mouthwash, but this must not replace dental floss or toothbrush.

Don’t hesitate to speak to your pharmacist if you have any questions about bad breath.

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No more bad breath!

It can be difficult to check whether your own breath is bad! Here are some pointers to help you out, as well as advice on how to remedy the situation.
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