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let's talk about breath, baby!

Let's Talk About Breath, Baby 

🎵 Let’s talk about you and me. Let's talk about all the good things and the bad things that cause halitosis. Let's talk about breath! Let's talk about breath, baby! 🎵

Bad breath. It happens to the best of us. Whether it's right after that morning cup of joe or the garlicky leftovers you had for lunch, we all have it sometimes! Also referred to as "halitosis," bad breath is a condition that causes an unpleasant odor in a person's exhaled air. It can lead to embarrassment and anxiety, especially when you are out in public or on a hot date! In some severe cases, halitosis can be a sign of an underlying disease. According to the National Library of Medicine, more than 50% of the general population has halitosis. That's a whole lot of bad breath! But don't worry, there are ways to manage it. Read on to learn how to combat that stinky breath: 

What causes halitosis?

There are a few reasons why you may be constantly reaching for those breath mints. According to Cureus, more than 85% of halitosis cases are due to intraoral conditions, such as tongue coating and poor oral hygiene. This is caused by a buildup of bacteria in the mouth and can happen when you eat certain foods like onions, garlic, and spices. Enjoyed that Indian food last night? That delicious meal could be the culprit. When we eat, food particles get stuck in the crevices of our mouth and in between our teeth causing a foul odor from bacteria buildup. The longer it’s in your mouth, the longer bacteria have to grow and the more your breath will stink.

Other culprits include smoking and tobacco use, dry mouth, and medications. Did you know that certain medications break down in the body and release chemicals that are linked to bad breath? Ever see that episode of Ted Lasso when Phoebe’s breath smells because of the medication she’s on? It is totally true and can absolutely happen to you! A lot of times, medications also cause dry mouth, which is another factor of halitosis. Dry mouth is caused by the lack of saliva in the mouth. Saliva actually helps cleanse your mouth, removing particles that cause bad odors. You know when you wake up in the morning and have that dreaded morning breath? Well, you can thank your dry mouth for that!

Additionally, Cureus states that ear-nose-throat diseases account for 10% of halitosis cases, whereas 5% of individuals have halitosis due to gastrointestinal disorders. Other conditions include diabetes, liver disease, and kidney disease. Diseases such as cancer or other metabolic disorders can cause bad breath due to the chemicals they produce. 

How to treat and prevent halitosis?

Now that you know the causes, let’s discuss how you can treat and prevent embarrassing bad breath.

After eating, make sure to brush, floss, and use mouthwash to reduce the likelihood of experiencing bad breath. Additionally, use toothpaste with an antibacterial agent to kill the bacteria that causes halitosis. 

Pro tip: Remember to brush your tongue! Your tongue harbors a lot of bacteria. Scrape or brush your tongue by applying slight pressure, then say hello to fresher breath! 

In need of a life hack? After changing your toothbrush every three to four months (don’t just wait until your next dental visit), find a soft bristle toothbrush with a tongue scraper. Double duty. You'll thank us later!

If you have dentures or other dental appliances like clear aligners or retainers, make sure to thoroughly clean them before popping them back into your mouth, as food can often get trapped in them. Additionally, avoid smoking, chewing tobacco, alcohol, and sugary drinks. Although we all love to indulge from time to time, these things can cause dry mouth, which leads to halitosis. Remember dry mouth = stinky breath! To combat this, make sure to drink plenty of water to prevent dry mouth. Hydration is key! You can also grab a stick of sugarless gum to stimulate saliva.

And, of course, don't forget about those high volatile foods we talked about. If you’re going on a date, be sure to steer clear of the sugary foods, garlic, onions, etc. These foods won’t do your breath any favors!

Lastly, schedule regular dental cleanings with your favorite Dentist - we mean Dr. Deliz, schedule your cleanings with Dr. Deliz. Twice a year is ideal! If you feel as though your halitosis is due to an underlying condition, visit Deliz Dental Studio for an accurate diagnosis.

Due for a cleaning? We would love to see you! Schedule your appointment with us today. If you have anxiety about your bad breath, don't worry! We are a judgment-free and welcoming community of dental professionals who are here to help every step of the way. Call or visit our website, today to book your dental cleaning. 



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