Fresh Breath Clinic
There is much more to the perfect pout than just fantastic teeth. Your lips and tongue are equally important in ensuring complete oral health. We use them to do the things we enjoy most such as speaking, eating and smiling, so it is important to know how to take care of them!
Bad breath is an antisocial and unwanted problem not for those who have it but for those who are on the receiving end of it. It can be caused by medical conditions such as stomach problems or even prescribed medication, most of the time it’s due to poor oral hygiene or what we ate at lunch or dinner.
It can be very difficult to detect your own bad breath. The reason for this is because the oral cavity (the first space in the mouth) is connected to our nose by an opening which lies in the back of our mouth. Our noses filter out and ignore background odours therefore filtering out and ignoring the quality of our own breath. This is why it is quite possible for a person to have bad breath and yet not be aware of it themselves.
Common Causes of Bad Breath
|Spices||Certain spices produce compounds which eventually contribute to smelly breath and sweat.|
|Garlic and onions||They create volatile sulphide compounds which give off a rotten-egg odour.|
|Coffee||It contains acids that decrease oxygenation of the mouth, which, in turn, increases bacteria production.|
|Smoking||Smoking deteriorates the gums causing a disease called periodontitis which causes very bad breath. Also the smoke itself smells bad so when you inhale it in your body your mouth holds the smell giving you bad breath.|
|Alcohol||Alcohol dries the mouth decreasing saliva allowing bacteria to spread in your mouth.|
|Dairy and milk products||Protein is a source for bad breath bacteria but also it thickens nasal mucous making it harder to clear away.|
|Sugar||Bacteria feed off sugar in your mouth and produce strong acids leading to tooth decay resulting in a build up of food debris and bad odour.|
|Fizzy drinks||The carbon dioxide in fizzy drinks is acidic and strong enough to damage the surface layers of teeth causing tooth decay and a foul smell in the oral cavity.|
|Poor oral hygiene||Poor tooth brushing technique, irregular tooth brushing and dental neglect will allow bacteria to fester in your mouth causing malodour.|
|Medications and medical conditions||If you think your medication or a medical condition (e.g. diabetes) could be causing your bad breath contact your doctor or dentist for an examination.|
|Mouth breathing||Some people breathe continuously through their mouths causing dryness and a unique poor smell which can be attributed to a substance called mercaptans.|
How to keep your breath fresh…
- The tongue is the most likely culprit of bad breath due to substances called mercaptans, which can be found in foods such as garlic, onions and beer. Unfortunately they have the distinctive smell of rotten cabbage, but regular cleaning of the tongue will help to keep this under control.
- As well as brushing your teeth, you need to ensure that you also clean your tongue thoroughly and often. This can be done with a regular toothbrush or a tongue scraper.
- In the majority of cases bad breath originates from the rear of the tongue, and cleaning this area with an ergonomically designed tongue cleaner can usually prevent this.
- Using a mouthwash is an important part of maintaining oral hygiene, and if you suffer from bad breath it may be advisable to use a prescribed mouthwash to reduce the bacteria responsible.