Abacus Dental Care, 52 Lennon Drive, Milton Keynes, MK8 0AS

How to deal with bad breath?

Bad breath, which is medically known as Halitosis, is used to describe particularly unpleasant smells when a person breathes or opens their mouth. Halitosis can have a big impact on both an individual’s personal and social life as it can feel very embarrassing to the individual suffering from it.

It is known as the third most frequent reason for receiving dental treatment, bad breath is a condition that many people deal with on a daily basis; halitophobia is used to describe someone who fears that they have bad breath. This fear can cause people to suffer greatly when in social situations which ultimately, can affect a person’s day to day life as they may wish to refrain from coming into close contact with other people.

What causes bad breath?

Trapped Proteins

There are a number of different causes of bad breath and while many of them are not entirely understood, there are a few that have been highlighted by professionals. Proteins that have been trapped in the mouth that are then processed by the bacteria that lives in your mouth are known to cause bad breath.

Unclean Tongue

Another common cause of bad breath is simply a person’s tongue. The back of the tongue is known to be relatively dry and rarely properly cleaned and therefore large amounts of bacteria are often found there, resulting in bad breath.

Dry Mouth

“Dry mouth” is another known cause of bad breath especially during the night, which is why most people wake up with “morning breath”. The mouth is dry and inactive throughout the night as you don’t supply your mouth with fluids while you’re asleep and saliva production is reduced. These cleanse and wash away the bacteria from your mouth usually.

What are the treatments for bad breath?

Mouth rinses and toothpastes – bad breath can be due to a buildup of bacteria known as plaque on your teeth, so your dentist may recommend a mouth rinse that kills the bacteria and a toothpaste containing an antibacterial chemical to kill the bacteria that causes the plaque to build up in the first case.

Gum Disease – this disease causes gums to pull away from your teeth, leaving deep pockets that can fill with bacteria which then produce bad smells and odours. This may require professional cleaning by our dental hygienists to remove the debris and bacteria. Your dentist might also recommend replacing old or damaged tooth restorations which can act as a breeding ground for bacteria.

What can I do to prevent bad breath?

  • Brush your teeth after you eat and then floss. Brush your teeth at least twice a day for 2 minutes each time and especially after meals. Keep a toothbrush at work to use after eating.
  • Use a toothpaste with antibacterial properties and use an interdental aid such as floss or brushes to remove food and plaque on and between your teeth. This will reduce bad breath.
  • Brush your tongue. This helps remove odour-inducing bacteria that live on your tongue. Carefully brushing your tongue daily will help to reduce bad smells and odours.
  • Smoking unfortunately coats your tongue even more than the bacteria that cause bad breath so stopping or reducing smoking will help reduce halitosis. If you can’t quit smoking then you may benefit from using a tongue scraper to remove excess bacteria. Some toothbrushes also have a built-in tongue cleaner.
  • Keeping your mouth moist can help reduce bad breath so avoid cigarettes and drink plenty of water throughout the day. Drinks like coffee, soft drinks and alcohol should be avoided as they can lead to a dry mouth. Chewing gum or sucking on sugarless sweets will stimulate saliva and help keep your mouth and tongue moist.
  • Clean dentures and dental appliances. If you have a bridge or a denture, clean it thoroughly at least once a day or as directed by your dentist. If you have a dental retainer or mouth guard, clean it each time before you put it in your mouth. Your dentist can recommend the best cleaning products.
  • Change your diet. Avoiding foods that sour your breath such as garlic and onions, these foods are usually associated with causing bad breath. Eating sugary foods is also linked to unpleasant odours.
  • Change your toothbrush regularly, here at Abacus Dental Care we recommend changing your toothbrush when it becomes frayed or roughly every three to four months.
  • Schedule regular dental checkups See your dentist on a regular basis, at least twice a year, to have your teeth or dentures examined and cleaned and see a dental hygienist every three to six months to maintain a good oral hygiene routine.

To book your dental check-up appointment today call us on 01908 260757 or contact us here.

Back to Blog

Get in touch

Abacus Dental - Logo

52 Lennon Drive, Milton Keynes, MK8 0AS

Facebook Instragram Twitter

Ask us a question