What are the most common causes of bad breath?

Sep 16, 2022 | Blog

We’ve all been there. You’re at a party talking to someone and begin to worry about the smell of your breath. Perhaps someone has told you before that you have bad breath and now you can’t stop thinking about it. It’s beginning to cause you extreme anxiety. But what causes bad breath? In this blog, I will go over the most common causes of bad breath.

What causes bad breath?

In summary, bad breath is caused by odour-producing bacteria that grow in the mouth. When you don’t keep up a regular oral health routine, bacteria accumulate on the bits of food left in your mouth and between your teeth. The sulfur compounds released by these bacteria make your breath smell rancid. Although most cases of bad breath can be cured by maintaining a consistent teeth cleaning routine, there are certain conditions such as Halitosis that can be more complex to get rid of. 

What is Halitosis?

Halitosis – or chronic bad breath is something that brushing your teeth or chewing on mint gum can’t solve. Unlike “morning breath”- which we all get, or a strong smell that lingers after eating something fishy or garlic-infused, Halitosis remains for an extended amount of time and could be a sign of something more serious. Halitosis develops from one very simple and common root cause—poor oral hygiene habits, exacerbated by having an unhealthy diet and/or lifestyle. 

What causes Halitosis or chronic bad breath?

There are many different elements that are known to cause chronic bad breath or Halitosis. If left untreated or ignored, they can lead to serious health issues. The following are the most common causes of Halitosis:

  • Smoking or chewing Tobacco
  • Mouth nose or throat infections
  • Dental issues such as cavities or gum disease
  • Dry mouth caused by medications, alcohol consumption and/or certain medical conditions such as gastric reflux, diabetes, liver or kidney disease.

The bottom line

It is always important to remember that oral health and general health go hand in hand. Frequently, when there is someone going wrong in the mouth, there is also something going wrong in another part of your body. What you consume and how you treat your health can have lasting effects on not only your heart, brain, liver and kidney function but your teeth as well. Just as you go to the doctor to maintain your physical health, you must go to the dentist to maintain your oral health. Think of your fitness routine the same way you do your oral health routine, whereas instead of walking on a treadmill and lifting weights to improve your overall health, you are brushing and flossing to improve your oral health.