Halitosis is one of the most common oral health problems experienced by several people worldwide. This issue can be found in people of every age and walk of life. In general dentistry, halitosis is the most common issue among a large number of patients worldwide. It is a condition in which people experience bad breath problems even if they take good care of their mouth.
Due to this oral health issue, many people feel hesitant to start a conversation with people around them. They lose their confidence and sometimes feel depressed. It would be correct to say that halitosis significantly impacts a person in both ways, personally and socially. In this blog, you will learn about halitosis, the reasons behind this issue, and what can be done to overcome this oral health problem.
What are symptoms of Halitosis?
Halitosis, also known as chronic bad breath, is a breath odor problem that cannot be resolved with brushing, mouthwash, or by consuming mints. The issue is usually caused by:
- The waste material from bacteria in the mouth (generally called periodontal disease)
- Decayed food particles
- Other debris in the mouth
- Poor oral hygiene
All the things mentioned above produce a chemical compound in the mouth leading to an unpleasant odor. Unlike morning breath that remains for some time and goes after brushing or mouthwash, halitosis remains for a long time and may indicate something more serious.
What causes Halitosis?
Some of the key reasons that lead to the problem of Halitosis include:
Dental Problems: Dental issues can be the most common reasons behind halitosis. Poor dental hygiene can cause various dental problems. Issues like cavities and deeper pockets due to gum disease give bacteria (that cause bad breath) added space to hide in the deeper corners of the mouth. These bacteria are difficult to clean up with the help of brushing between the teeth. Thereby increases the chances of halitosis.
Infections: Infections in the mouth, nose, and even throat can also cause bad breath issues. Bacteria usually feed on mucus produced by the body when it fights against various infections like sinus, nose, or throat infections, causing sniffles and horrible smells.
Dry Mouth: Saliva plays an important role in dental health as well as breath. It helps to flush out any unnecessary leftovers from the mouth, break down food items, and delivers disease-fighting agents to prevent the emergence of any infections or cavities. When the body stops producing enough saliva, it can be an indicator of halitosis. Reasons that may lead to dry mouth conditions include certain medical conditions, medications, excess consumption of alcohol, tobacco, or caffeine.
Excess Smoking and Tobacco Consumption: Those who consume tobacco products regularly may experience severe bad breath issues and other health problems in their body. Tobacco products not only leave their strong odor in the breath but can also lead to the problem of dry mouth. Besides, excessive smoking can cause gum diseases that ultimately lead to halitosis.
Other chronic Issues: Though halitosis is usually the result of something abnormal happening in the mouth, it may also result from various chronic diseases such as liver or kidney disease, diabetes, gastric reflux, etc.
Ways to Deal with Halitosis
The best way to deal with bad breath issues like halitosis is to follow healthy daily dental hygiene. It is important to brush your teeth daily, at least twice a day for two minutes. Also, daily flossing (once) is essential. Using an antibacterial mouthwash can also help to eliminate harmful oral bacteria and freshen up breath. Make sure to use good quality products that are clinically proven to treat various oral health conditions. One must also drink plenty of water to avoid dry mouth issues and bad breath problems. Cutting back on excess caffeine intake can also help to improve the production of saliva and improve the freshness of breath. Besides, chewing sugar-free gum that contains xylitol may also help to control odor. Those who use dentures or removable appliances like mouth guards or retainers must clean them properly before placing them back in the mouth.
If the bad breath issue continues, it is advisable to see a dentist immediately. A professional dentist can perform a thorough examination to detect the root cause of bad breath or any other oral health issue. Based on the cause, the dentist can suggest the best possible treatment to treat the condition. He/she will suggest you the best products, steps, and treatment plans to treat your condition. Also, don’t forget to take the follow-up even if you notice any improvement in your condition. A complete treatment is a requirement to get rid of the bad breath issue completely.
Bad breath is a serious problem that must not be ignored. Quick bad breath fixing products are just a temporary solution. Ignoring this issue can lead to various other serious problems in the body. Therefore, it is advisable to include good oral hygiene practices in daily lives, frequent visits to a dentist, and get the treatment right before the issue starts getting worse.