Take Control of Bad Breath Before it Defeats You
If you think having a piece of kale stuck in between your front teeth is humiliating enough, you haven’t experienced the woes of living with bad breath.
This common condition affects about 65% of the American population and has the power to create personal discomfort in any social setting. While some people may be plagued with bad breath temporarily, others suffer from it on a long-term scale, which can cause significant damage to your self esteem and dental health.
Our dental office has come across its fair share of patients who have expressed concern over their halitosis. No matter what the cause for their condition is, we like to remind our Cooper City clients that there are ways to lessen the severity of their halitosis–even eliminate it altogether. The key to addressing this uncomfortable condition is to know what’s causing it in the first place.
Not sure where your bad breath is coming from? Let’s look at some of the reasons why you could be dealing with this less-than-desirable inconvenience, plus precautions you can take to eliminate it.
What Triggers Bad Breath?
Bad breath, clinically referred to as halitosis, is often a result of bacteria build-up in the mouth. Studies show that 80% of bad breath stems from oral causes, such as poor oral hygiene, gum disease, cavities and food particles that are trapped in the tonsils. In some cases, bad breath can be a symptom of an underlying medical condition.
You can also have excellent oral hygiene and still suffer from bad breath–this can be a result of your diet and lifestyle choices. For example:
- Onions and garlic: These two contain sulfur compounds that are absorbed into the bloodstream and create a lingering and unwelcoming odor in the mouth.
- Alcohol: Not only does alcohol promote the growth of bacteria, but it reduces the flow of saliva. This makes it harder to flush out odor-causing bacteria.
- Tobacco: Smoking or chewing tobacco is a leading culprit in the development of bad breath. These oral cancer causing agents linger in your mouth long after consumption.
Steps to Fighting Halitosis
There are precautions you can take successfully fight bad breath, such as:
- Don’t skip out on the routine brushing/flossing. Brushing twice a day is a fundamental rule for maintaining your oral health and keeping food debris and plaque away. You can also brush with baking soda, which helps reduce the acidity in the mouth and makes it difficult for bacteria to develop. Flossing also helps keep food debris at bay, which is crucial to preventing bacteria from feeding on it and jump-starting a foul odor.
- Replace your toothbrush. Your toothbrush can act as a host to several microorganisms, which can transfer to your mouth while brushing. The American Dental Association suggests that you replace your toothbrush every 3-4 months (or as soon as the bristles start to look worn).
Freshen your mouth with citrus. The citric acid contained in orange rinds or lemons help promote the production of saliva, which fights bad breath (just make sure not to go overboard, as too much citric acid can negatively affect tooth enamel).
- Consume raw, crunchy foods that pack a fighting punch. Did you know that healthy foods which pack an audible crunch–such as celery, carrots and apples–help keep your mouth rinsed? Its role in the production of saliva keeps bacteria from building up in your mouth. Apples, in particular, contain pectin, a dietary fiber that helps control food odors. Plus, who doesn’t love a multi-purpose snack?
- Don’t forget to visit your dentist. The team at Beaufils Dental encourages our patients to schedule their routine teeth cleaning for a round-the-clock healthy smile. A dental exam can also flag underlying medical conditions that trigger bad breath, so your next dental visit may be more important than you think.
Take a Stand Against Bad Breath Today
Regardless of what is triggering your halitosis, we’re here to assure you that this condition doesn’t have to take over your life. The fight against bad breath begins with making small changes that will positively reflect on your oral health. This fight starts with consulting with a dentist who understands your concerns and provides effective resolution. Dr. Beaufils is a Cooper City dentist with more than 24 years of experience helping patients on their journey to a healthy smile. Want to learn more about how you can fight bad breath easily and effectively? Contact our office today at 954-252-1390 to schedule an appointment.