What is Halitosis?
Halitosis, commonly known as “bad breath,” is a widespread dental health problem associated with an unpleasant odor emanating from the mouth due to sulfur bacteria found on the surface of the tongue and throat. Unhealthy oral hygiene practices and certain foods can cause this problem, which may indicate other health concerns. Aside from improving oral care routines, there are various bad breath treatments in the Philippines, which vary according to the underlying cause.
What Causes Bad Breath?
There are several factors that can cause halitosis, including but not limited to:
- Dry Mouth – Also called xerostomia, this condition is characterized by decreased saliva production, which is responsible for cleansing the mouth and clearing away food particles. It is possible to develop dry mouth due to a number of factors, including certain medications, salivary gland dysfunction, and excessive smoking.
- Certain Food Consumption – A person’s oral health, including their breath, is affected by their diet. The consumption of foods and beverages such as onions, garlic, cauliflower, sweets, excessive coffee, and alcohol, as well as a diet high in protein and low in carbohydrates, are known to cause halitosis. Once these food items are absorbed into the bloodstream, they may affect one’s breathing for some time following ingestion.
- Lack of Dental Care – In the absence of proper brushing, flossing, and regular dental examinations, food remains in the oral cavity, which results in the growth of bacteria. A buildup of food on the teeth, gums, and tongue may result in foul-smelling breath and an unpleasant taste in the mouth.
- Tooth Decay – A cavity occurs when bacteria destroy the surface of a tooth. If bacteria and acids remain on teeth for a prolonged period, the chances of tooth decay and halitosis increase.
- Poorly Cleaned Dentures – Bad breath is likely to occur when dentures lack proper cleaning, as bacteria and food particles can accumulate on the surfaces of the dentures.
- Periodontal Disease – This gum disease is characterized by bad breath and oral discomfort and requires prompt treatment and dental care.
- Excessive Use of Tobacco Products – Besides tooth discoloration and exposure to a number of diseases, smoking also results in bad breath. The risks associated with tobacco use include periodontal disease, impaired taste, irritating gums, and oral cancer.
- Various Health Conditions – Halitosis may indicate the presence of a wide range of conditions. These include respiratory illnesses, diabetes, gastrointestinal issues, and liver and kidney disease.
What are the Treatments for Bad Breath?
Halitosis or bad breath is generally treated based on its underlying cause and severity. Following a complete dental evaluation, treatment options will be provided, including:
- For Poor Oral Hygiene – A dentist may perform treatment on the cause of the problem by recommending thorough brushing and flossing.
- For Gum Disease – An oral specialist, particularly a periodontist, can provide treatment for bad breath associated with gum disease. Breath therapy in the Philippines involves a deep periodontal cleaning intended to reduce the accumulation of bacteria, tartar, and plaque that cause gum inflammation.
- For Plaque Buildup – In some cases, a dentist will recommend an antibacterial mouthwash and advise that teeth should be brushed properly in order to eliminate oral bacteria.
- For Health Conditions – The problem of bad breath can be resolved if an existing health condition is diagnosed and treated.
How Can I Prevent Bad Breath?
As a guideline, here are a few things to consider if you want to avoid bad breath or halitosis:
- Maintaining Good Oral Hygiene – Brush twice daily using fluoride toothpaste to eliminate food residue and plaque. Additionally, ensure that the tongue is brushed with a tongue scraper to prevent bacteria from growing that contribute to bad breath.
- Regular Dental Appointment – A healthy oral cavity requires regular visits to a dentist twice a year for a full oral examination, professional teeth cleaning, and treatment of periodontal disease, dry mouth, and halitosis-related issues.
- Avoid Smoking – If possible, refrain from using tobacco products, such as cigarettes, as this will help prevent bad breath. Seek the advice of a dentist in order to break the habit.
- Stay Hydrated – Keep the mouth moist by drinking plenty of water. Alternatively, sugar-free gums or candies can help increase saliva production, which is responsible for clearing food debris and bacteria.
- Balanced Diet – Eating more hard fruits and vegetables, such as apples, carrots, and celery, effectively removes foul-smelling plaque and deposits within the mouth. Keep a food journal to determine if certain foods are causing bad breath.
Seek a Dentist
If you are experiencing any of the following symptoms, you should consult a dentist:
- Having persistent bad breath despite self-treatment
- Experience sore, bleeding, or inflamed gums
- Wobbly teeth and toothache
- Denture complications
The smell of one’s breath speaks volumes about their oral health and overall well-being. Having halitosis can adversely affect your self-esteem and make you feel constantly worried, resulting in anxiety or an over-focus on your breath. Rather than self-diagnosing, a dentist can provide recommendations for proper oral hygiene practices and various treatment options to address the underlying cause of bad breath.
In case you experience no improvement with home remedies for bad breath or halitosis, you should consult a qualified dental professional. Cillo Smile Design is a leading dental clinic in Makati, Philippines, offering a wide range of general dentistry services and expertise in aesthetic and reconstructive dentistry. To learn more about the clinic or book an appointment, you may call +632 7729 6674 or email email@example.com.