Bad breath is enough to shoo away people from you. If it is persistent, do not ignore seeing a dentist, writes Dr Neha Kanwar, Senior Dental Consultant, Axiss Dental, India’s leading multi-specialty chain of dental clinics
Somebody screams at you to ‘shut your mouth’ and you find the sudden explosion inexplicable. But when the reaction is repetitive, you have no choice but to look for a reason, which turns out to be your bad breath.
Nothing is more frustrating than seeing people maintain distance from you because of your smelling oral breath. Stubborn bad breath in some cases could be an outcome of poor dental hygiene, continuous use of tobacco products, oral infections, among others.
Now, there might be times when you are very particular about your oral health. You brush your teeth twice a day and can’t do without tongue cleaning. Despite all that, the stinking, foul smell does not go away and bring you embarrassment the moment you open up your mouth in public.
If something of that sort is happening with you, then it is something that should not be ignored and need to be dealt with by some professional.
Conditions wherein dentists can help
Dry Mouth: This condition might arise from smoking, drinking and due to speaking consistently for a long time. The factors contribute to drying up of saliva, which result in dry mouth. Saliva production is hit during sleep as well, which is why the breath is foul in the morning. These stinking smell of the mouth, however, goes away once the saliva production is back to normal. But if does not, it is a sign to see a dentist and look for the exact reason for it.
Oral Infections: Gum problems, infections and cavities which are not healing lead to foul smell in the mouth. A visit to a dentist can help diagnose undetected gum issues and cavities, which must be resulting in unpleasant mouth odor.
Plaque Build-up: A sticky, whitish layer on teeth is plaque. When this film gets hardened on account of poor oral hygiene, it is gets difficult to get it remove through normal brushing routine. As plaque has various kinds of bacteria, it could lead to infections and foul odor.
Tonsils and sinus: Certain health issues like tonsils and sinus too become a cause for foul mouth odor. Digital dental imaging can help ascertain the exact cause for persistent bad breath and accordingly medication can be started.
How to avoid bad breath
Don’t smoke too much: Puffing too many cigarettes leaves with a pathetic smell. The odor gets permanent. It is good to limit cigarette smoking.
Restrict intake of alcohol: Too much consumption of alcohol result in dry mouth that is a reason for bad breath.
Take care of oral hygiene: It is important to take care of your oral health. Brushing twice a day daily – in the morning and at night -- cuts plaque build up and prevent bad breath.
Drink a lot of water: It is not possible to brush teeth after every meal. So one should try to drink a lot of water by which food particles can at least get rinsed.
Visit your dentist regularly: It is pertinent to see your doctor every three or maximum six months. The dentist can examine your oral condition and get bad breath treated, if it is there.
Bad breath can be upsetting. If it is happening for normal reasons, it is ok. But if it is consistent, seeking dentist’s help is more than important.