Few things are more embarrassing than noticing someone edging away from you slowly and wondering if it's because of the garlic spaghetti you had for dinner the night before. 

Dealing with the problem can be extremely embarrassing, regardless of whether your foul breath is the result of a chronic problem (think: gingivitis) or you just forgot to floss after brushing. 

Be it anything, bad breath brings bad results if ignored.

The medical term for bad breath is halitosis. Everyone occasionally falls prey to bad breath, especially after consuming foods with strong flavours like garlic or onions. 

bad breath causes and treatment and home remedies

Chronic halitosis, on the other hand, may point to a sickness that is affecting another part of your body or to a problem with your dental health. 

Bad breath is a widespread problem that can cause severe psychological distress.

It has been observed in various types of research that bad breath leads to serious psychological anguish.

There are numerous probable reasons and available therapies.

Bad breath can affect anyone. One in four people, on average, have consistently bad breath. Halitosis is the third most frequent reason people seek dental care, after gum disease and tooth decay.

Often, the problem can be resolved with a few straightforward home remedies and lifestyle modifications like better tooth care and giving up smoking. 

To check for underlying causes, however, it is advised to see a doctor if bad breath persists.

Bad Breath Symptoms

Depending on the underlying reason, the smell of breath can change. As it might be challenging to judge your mouth odour, it is preferable to ask a close friend or relative to do so.

If no one is around, you can check the smell by licking your wrist, letting it dry, and then sniffing it. You may have halitosis if you have a terrible odour on this part of your wrist.

Even though you may not have much or any mouth odour, you will end up worrying about your breath. Halitophobia is a syndrome that can make cleaning your mouth an obsession.

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What Causes Bad Breath?

1. Poor dental care

  • Bacteria break and digest food fragments that become stuck in the mouth or on the teeth. In your mouth, bacteria and food decay combine to create an unpleasant odour. 
  • Regular tooth brushing and flossing remove trapped food before it decomposes.
  • Plaque, a sticky substance that accumulates on your teeth and produces odour, is also removed by brushing. Periodontal disease and cavities can be brought on by plaque buildup. 
  • If you wear dentures and don't clean them every night, bad breath may also be an issue.

2. Abrasive foods and drinks

  • When you consume foods like onions, garlic, or other pungent flavours, your stomach absorbs its oils during digestion. These oils move to your lungs after entering your bloodstream.
  • Your breath will emit an odour for up to 72 hours as a result of this. The consumption of odour-intensive beverages like coffee might also aggravate bad breath.

3. Smoking

  • Smoking cigarettes or cigars dries out your mouth, which can further exacerbate the unpleasant odour on your breath.

4. Mouth Ache

  • Insufficient production of saliva can lead to dry mouth, which is responsible for masking odours and maintaining mouth freshness. 
  • A dry mouth can result from various causes, including salivary gland disorders, sleeping with an open mouth, or using medications for high blood pressure and urinary disorders.

5. Gum Diseases 

  • Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, can become chronic if plaque is not removed from teeth on time. 
  • As plaque ages, it hardens into tartar, which cannot be eliminated by brushing and can worsen gum inflammation.
  • Tartar can lead to the development of pockets, or tiny openings, in the space between the gums and teeth. 
  • The pockets may become clogged with food, bacteria, and dental plaque, giving out a pungent odour.

6. Throat, mouth, or sinus issues

  • When you have a sinus infection or postnasal discharge, bad breath may result.
  • An infection of the upper or lower respiratory system is called chronic bronchitis.
  • The bacteria-collecting nature of tonsil stones makes them a potential source of bad breath.

7. Diseases

Unusual breath odour can be a symptom of some diseases. This includes:

  • Kidney disease or failure.

  • Liver disease or failure.

  • Diabetes.

  • Sleep Apnea.

  • Gastroesophageal Reflux Disorder (GERD), is a relatively common cause of halitosis.

What Options are there for Treating Bad Breaths?

A possible solution in cases of bad breath due to excessive plaque accumulation is dental cleaning. 

If you have periodontal disease, you could need a thorough dental cleaning.

Breath odour can also be improved by treating underlying medical conditions such as sinus infection or renal disease. 

If dry mouth is the root of your odour issue, your dentist may advise using an artificial saliva product and drinking plenty of water.

6 Tips to Treat Bad Breath at Home

A bit of lifestyle modification has a significant impact on reducing the risk of bad breath. 

Here are a few tips, which, if followed regularly, act as a possible solution for bad breath.

  • Make sure to clean your teeth at least twice daily, preferably right after each meal.

  • Floss: Flossing helps to remove plaque and food fragments that have accumulated between the teeth. Only about 60 per cent of the tooth's surface is thoroughly cleaned by brushing.

  • Clean your dentures: You should clean your dentures, a bridge, or a mouth guard as directed each day if they go into your mouth. Cleaning stops the bacteria from accumulating and returning to the mouth. It's crucial to replace your toothbrush every two to three months for identical reasons.

  • Clean your tongue: Dead cells, food particles, and bacteria frequently accumulate there, especially in smokers or people who have unusually dry mouths. Sometimes using a tongue scraper is helpful.

  • Drink plenty of water to prevent dry mouth. Avoid using smoke and alcohol as they both dry out the mouth. Saliva can be induced by sucking on the gum or a sweet, ideally one without sugar. A doctor may recommend a medicine that promotes the flow of saliva if the mouth is constantly dry.

  • Diet: Stay away from spicy foods, onions, and garlic. Bad breath is also associated with sugary foods. Reduce your coffee and alcohol intake. Cleaning the back of the tongue can be accomplished by eating a breakfast that comprises gritty items.

However, you must consult your doctor or dentist if your foul breath persists despite your efforts. 

Discuss this with a doctor as soon as you can because a medical ailment, such as a digestive issue, might produce bad breath.

How to Get Rid of Bad Breath?

The only way to treat halitosis is to give direction to the cause and work on the solution. Gum and breath mints only temporarily mask the issue.

Your healthcare practitioner can develop a treatment strategy that is personalized for your needs once they have identified the cause of your halitosis.

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