Bad Breath Causes and Treatment
Bad breath, or halitosis, is something that no one wants to deal with. While it has no visual markers, it can make social interactions difficult and shatter your confidence. But bad breath in all of its forms can be treated. James M. Stein, DMD, is able to offer bad breath treatment options at his Boston dentistry practice, helping patients determine the cause of their halitosis so they can follow an effective treatment plan.
What Are the Most Common Causes of Bad Breath?
There are many different issues that can cause bad breath, but there are a few origins that tend to show up more frequently:
- Poor Hygiene Habits: One of the most common causes of bad breath is simply poor dental hygiene. Failing to brush and floss regularly can contribute to a build-up of bacteria within the mouth, prompting the onset of bad breath as well as the development of plaque and tartar build-up.
- Smoking or Using Other Tobacco Products: Even moderate tobacco use can result in a very distinct aroma, causing bad breath along with other symptoms of decay including discolored teeth and periodontitis.
- Illness and Infection: Sometimes an illness such as a sinus infection can result in bad breath as one of its symptoms. In these cases, the resulting bad breath is temporary. An oral infection can also cause bad breath directly at the site.
- Dry Mouth: Dry mouth is an issue that can be caused by a number of factors from genetics to a reaction to certain medications. An excessively dry mouth can foster environment that bacteria need to flourish.
- Tooth Decay: As a tooth breaks down within the mouth, it can give off an unpleasant odor of dental decay.
There are several other possible causes that could be a contributing factor to bad breath, ranging from mundane explanations like food stuck between teeth to serious issues such as oral cancer. An experienced cosmetic dentist is your best bet toward identifying the issue in order to develop a plan of attack.
What Are My Bad Breath Treatment Options?
Treating bad breath effectively requires accurately identifying and treating the source of bad breath. Because bad breath can have several different causes, there are also several different treatments that can be effective at eliminating halitosis. For example, if it turns out that your bad breath is caused by:
- …Poor Hygiene Habits: Depending on the stage, halitosis caused by poor hygiene can often be easily treated by improving those habits with a strict daily routine of brushing, flossing, and utilizing an antibacterial mouthwash.
- …Smoking or Using Other Tobacco Products: If cigarettes or other tobacco products are causing noticeable bad breath issues, your dentist will likely recommend that you consider cutting back or even quitting altogether.
- …Illness and Infection: This can be the easiest cause of bad breath to treat. If your bad breath is caused by an illness like a sinus infection, treating the illness with antibiotics can be enough to kill the resulting bad breath issue as well.
- …Dry Mouth: Bad breath resulting from chronic dry mouth can be treated by staying hydrated, along with enlisting the help of products such as mouthwashes specially formulated for dry mouth.
- …Tooth Decay: If your bad breath turns out to be caused by tooth decay, your dentist will most likely correct the issue through restorative dentistry techniques such as a filling or a root canal topped by a dental crown. By removing the decayed tissue of the tooth, the source of bad breath will be eliminated.
Learn More about Your Options for Treating Bad Breath Today
When you know the cause of bad breath, treatment becomes that much easier. If you are suffering from bad breath, don’t go it alone. Contact the office of Dr. James M. Stein at Stein Esthetics to schedule an appointment today and learn more about what you can do to treat bad breath symptoms and get rid of the problem for good.