Bad breath is an intolerable problem for many people and reduces their self-confidence. It is more annoying for your surroundings when you are not aware of it. That’s why all stores have shelves full of chewing gum and deodorants to eliminate bad breath. But these products are temporary solutions, relying on them is just sweeping it under the carpet. Bad breath is not considered a medical emergency, but it can overshadow your social life. Based on statistical data, about 25 to 30 percent of the world’s population is struggling with this problem.
Bad breath, symptoms, causes, and treatment
Bad breath, a situation called halitosis or fetor oris, is a condition that can occur to anyone at different periods in life. There are many reasons leading to bad breath. Sometimes oral health care satisfactorily resolves the issue, on other hand, sometimes there are much more severe reasons underlying the unpleasant smell from the mouth and requires more follow-up.
Many factors cause bad breath, which are mentioned below.
Tobacco products result in bad breath, as well as increase the risk of gum disease. Smokers also suffer from this problem. Smoking not only dries saliva; It can also raise mouth temperature. As a result, the mouth becomes a breeding ground for bacteria. Nicotine in cigarettes and other tobacco products relaxes the valve between the esophagus and stomach (LES). This causes gastric acid (return of stomach acid to the esophagus). Smoking is a potential risk factor for cancer in the mouth, throat, esophagus, stomach, pancreas, liver, and colon.
Decomposition of food particles stuck in the teeth is a potential reason for bad breath. Some food can also lead to bad breath, take onion and garlic for instance. In addition, metabolites from their digestion are transported through the blood to the lungs and bring about an unpleasant smell in the mouth.
Onions and garlic are the most common and well-known irritants of bad breath or halitosis. Additionally, other components, such as coffee and alcohol, can temporarily change the smell of breath. Onions and garlic contain pungent oils that travel through the bloodstream to the lungs. When you breathe, the remnants of these substances are exhaled.
The most pivotal and predominant cause of bad breath is lack of oral hygiene. Brushing and flossing remove small particles of food that slowly decompose and result in bad breath. If brushing is not regular and frequent, it will create a thin layer of bacteria (plaque). This plaque can irritate the gums and lead to inflammation between the teeth and gum called “gingivitis.” If you do not clean prostheses and artificial products in the mouth regularly or properly, they can also be a breeding ground for bacteria.
Some medications can reduce saliva and result in bad breath. Some others bring about displeasing smell by breaking down and releasing into the breath. For example, nitrates that are taken for heart pain treatment, some chemotherapy drugs, some sedatives such as phenothiazines, and high doses of vitamin supplements. People who take vitamin supplements in high doses are also prone to bad breath.
Sometimes problems in the mouth and jaw lead to bad breath. Take tonsil stones, for example. One of the most common diseases is tonsillitis. When tonsil stones are formed, they make a hotbed for bacteria growth, which creates an unpleasant odor in the long run. Infection or inflammation in the nose, throat, or sinuses can also result in bad breath. Oral infections, surgical scars after oral surgery, tooth extraction, tooth decay, gum disease, or mouth ulcers are probable grounds for this medical situation.
Some diseases cause bad breath, such as uncontrolled diabetes, dry mouth (saliva has an antimicrobial effect), throat infection, sinusitis, or sinus infections. Some other situations like cancers, gastrointestinal disorders such as gastric acid reflux (GERD), vomiting, gastric ulcer, intestinal obstruction, lactose intolerance, liver failure, kidney failure, and upper or lower respiratory tract infection can lead to bad breath.
Some cancers, liver failure, and other metabolic diseases can cause bad breath due to certain chemical production. Gastric reflux disease (GERD) causes bad breath for the regular return of stomach acid.
When insulin levels fall in diabetics, sugar cannot be used as energy source in their body, and fat is replaced. When fat breaks down, ketones are produced. Large amounts of ketones in the body are toxic and are a reason for bad breath. Ketoacidosis is a potentially life-threatening disease.
Feasible treatments for bad breath
As mentioned, the reasons underlying bad breath are various. First and foremost, the major cause should be diagnosed and then act accordingly to eliminate this annoying condition. Many people may be looking to get rid of bad breath in the morning or may want to find a way to get rid of bad breath caused by the stomach.
Cast bad breath away by some foodstuff
The use of certain foods can be effective for bad breath elimination, including:
- Chewing a few cloves and fennel seeds by their antiseptic properties helps eliminate bad breath.
- Use green tea or eat a slice of lemon or orange.
- Eating one or more apples during the day helps control the bad breath by producing saliva.
- Consume yogurt or chew fresh parsley, basil, and mint sprouts.
- Use apple cider vinegar or baking soda.
In the case of apple cider vinegar, dissolve one or two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar in a glass of cold water and gargle it morning and night.
For baking soda, you can mix one and a half teaspoons of it in a glass of warm water and rinse your mouth, or brush your teeth with a small amount of baking soda and get rid of bad breath.
See a doctor if you are suffering from Nasopharyngeal problems
To get rid of bad breath caused by the throat, you should see a doctor check your tonsils. In most cases, your doctor will prescribe an appropriate antibiotic or medication to eliminate the bad breath caused by the infection; But never use antibiotics arbitrarily, as it can cause drug resistance. You can use salt and water to reduce throat infections and massage salt on the gum to increase its health.
Mind your oral hygiene
There are also simple but effective figures to eliminate bad breath. One example is brushing, brush two to three times a day and be sure to change your toothbrush after eight weeks to three months to prevent tooth decay and bad breath. Also, brush your teeth for at least two minutes and then use mouthwash. Flossing is also remarkably important along with brushing and doubles its effect.
To get rid of bad breath in the morning after brushing, be sure to clean your tongue from back to front with a toothbrush; You can do this with the help of a special toothbrush or the same regular toothbrush after cleaning your teeth. It helps to kill the germs that cause bad breath.
If you use dentures, take them out of your mouth before going to bed. Also, brush them before use, and see your dentist twice a year for a dental checkup.
Gastric problems resolution
Gastric problems are one of the most common reasons for bad breath. To prevent gastric reflux, do the following:
- Lose weight
- Do not lie down after eating and do not do strenuous exercise
- Use mint and parsley and chew licorice
- Never drink coffee or fizzy drinks on an empty stomach
- Avoid overeating
If you have symptoms of severe gastroesophageal reflux disease, see your doctor as soon as possible and take proper medication.
The presence of Helicobacter pylori in the stomach causes infection and a displeasing smell in the mouth, the symptoms of which include excessive burping, bloating in the stomach and abdomen, nausea, anorexia, and weight loss.
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