Bad breath: causes and what to do about it
Bad breath gives both bad taste in the mouth and unpleasant smell. Fortunately, there are measures you can do yourself to avoid and reduce the problem. The most important is good dental hygiene.
Bad breath, or halitosis as it is called in the technical terminology, is a very common problem and most of us will at times experience this. It is very common in the morning but disappears quickly after brushing.
WHY DO YOU GET BAD BREATH?
There are several reasons why you get bad breath, but most often it is due to the conditions in your mouth. It is usually caused by bacteria in the mouth that produce sulfur-containing substances with a foul smell.
People with gum disease (periodontitis) can easily get bad breath. Common reasons are deep pockets in the gums where little oxygen is added, increased content of inflammatory cells and high pH. These are ideal production conditions for bad breath development. In addition, the tongue and especially the posterior part, is an important place where these bacteria gather.
Other reasons can be irregular meals, stress or weight loss. All of these reasons can cause bacteria to grow in your mouth. Food debris that settles around the teeth and into the gums, as well as various stomach problems can also cause a bad smell that is exhaled together with the air from the lungs.
HOW TO AVOID OR REDUCE BAD BREATH?
The most important measure to avoid or reduce bad breath is good oral hygiene. This means regular brushing, flossing and follow-up with a dentist. All surfaces of the teeth must be cleaned. It is especially important to clean thoroughly on the sides of the tongue and between the teeth. It can also help to cleanse the tongue, where bacteria easily settle.
Toothpaste with zinc or zinc tablets is recommended, because zinc reacts with the sulfur-containing substances and thus reduces the bad smell.
It is also important to eat regularly as a long time between meals can lead to increased formation of the odorants. Remember to drink enough water. It will help to rinse / gargle the mouth with water. Studies show that bad breath is removed for at least 15 minutes after rinsing with water.