What is bad breath and how would you know if you are suffering from it? Bad breath, medically known as halitosis, is nothing but the foul smell coming out from your mouth when you open it to say, talk to people or eat, etc. Now how would you know if you have bad breath? Well that part is easy. Simply lick your palm with your tongue, let the saliva dry and then smell your palm. If it smells foul then you can be assured that your breath is just as bad, if not worse.
There are many reasons behind the occurrence of bad breath, which we are going to discuss in this article. Once you learn about the causes of bad breath, it would become easier for you to look for and find the bad breath remedies! Generally speaking, bad breath is caused when a lot of food particles and debris get accumulated in the mouth and build a plaque inside, causing the halitosis bacteria to start growing in there. In rare cases, bad breath can also be caused by gum diseases.
Food: When it comes to reasons behind bad breath, perhaps the worst offenders in this category are garlic and onion, There is a reason why people sometimes refer to bad breath as either ‘garlic breath’ or ‘onion breath’. They contain a certain type of sulfur compound which makes our breath foul. In fact bad breath caused by garlic and onion can last up to twenty-four hours even after you have brushed your teeth! If you rub a bulb of garlic on to your skin your skin would give off a stinking odor sometime later. Garlic contains several organosulfer compounds, diallyl disulfide being just one of them. These compounds, after they are absorbed by our blood and internal organs, enter our lungs and exit through our breath, thereby giving us the nasty bad breath!
Sometimes, the real reasons behind bad breath are the food particles hidden inside your mouth: in between your teeth and gums. These food particles may not leave your mouth even after tooth brushing; in turn these food leftovers rot in your mouth and give off foul odor – eventually manifesting in the form of halitosis. That is why it is essential that you floss your teeth well before brushing!
Did you know that dairy (milk) products such as cheese, butter etc., can cause bad breath too? Alcohol and smoking can make your breath even worse! You should mitigate or even better, quit both smoking and drinking, as these can worsen your breath and teeth problems!
Even if you don’t smoke but use tobacco in some other forms such as chewing, or as snuff, then too it can result in foul breath. Apart from making your breath smell bad, tobacco, along with smoking, is known to cause not just the discoloration of teeth but also gum diseases – the periodontal diseases which are often the cause of halitosis!
Now, if you think that it is okay to drink coffee, you are dead wrong! When it comes to halitosis, coffee is as much an offender as alcohol, garlic, onion, tobacco and dairy products.
Other foods that can case halitosis are meat, asparagus, eggs, fish, cabbage, shallots, cauliflower, broccoli, sweet as well as spicy foods.
Medications: The saliva in our mouth offers us more functions than helping us eat and swallow well. It is the mouthwash bestowed upon us naturally. Saliva is in fact what fights with the halitosis bacteria inside our mouth. When there is a lack of saliva in mouth (for example, if our mouth is dry), then the food particles and dead cells inside your mouth are not washed away or swallowed. Therefore, the bad breath bacteria find our mouth an easy target because it can then thrive on these dead cells, producing the malodorous breath that results in halitosis! One of the reasons why we wake up with a foul breath in the morning is because when we sleep at night our saliva glands get deactivated and our mouth goes dry!
There are many other reasons why you may suffer from dry mouth. For example, if you don’t drink adequate water during the day, or if you consume diuretics too often (be it in the form of medications, or beverages like tea and coffee) then it can cause your mouth to go dry. Often, certain medicines such as aspirin and anti-depressant pills are known to cause dry mouth as well.
Diseases: In the rarest of rare cases, halitosis can be caused by some dreadful disease, such as sinusitis and bronchitis (more so if you happen to be a chronic sufferer). Other diseases that can cause bad breath are diabetes, tonsillitis, throat infection, liver ailments, kidney diseases, issues with the respiratory tract as well as the gastrointestinal tract.
Take sinus drainage for example. It is usually associated with sinusitis. If you have ever noticed that some people have bad breath coming out of their noses rather than their mouth, then they are suffering from a case of sinus drainage. This drainage which consists of dead sinus cells, pus cells, blood cells, etc., is rich in protein, which is what the bad breath bacteria really needs to thrive. These bacteria wait for the person to eat and when the food enters the mouth they eat up what they want and then excrete in the mouth. The excrement contains the sulfur that causes bad breath. At the same time these bacteria also grow at the back of our tongue from where they get a steady supply of oxygen. Note that sinus drainage is not always a sign of sinusitis. Some people suffer from it even when their nasal passages are blocked due to some allergy or viral infection such as cold, flu, etc. As such even people suffering from flu can have bad breath!
Did you know that you can detect your diseases through your breath? For instance, if your breath smells like ammonia then chances are that you are suffering from some kind of kidney ailment! On the other hand, if it smells like metal or acid then that means that your heart is not healthy. Sometimes bad breath can emanate from our digestive system. Let us face it, if your digestive system is not functioning properly, then how can our breath be nice and pleasant? If you notice that your bad breath doesn’t go away even after brushing of your teeth and cleansing of your tongue, then it is possible that the root cause behind this is your digestion issues. Have you had any difficulty in clearing bowls, or have suffered from acidity or heartburn?
Along with halitosis, are you also suffering from rheumatism? Does your heart pound constantly? Do you experience aches in your waist and back? If all these symptoms are true, then chances are that you may be suffering from tonsil infection and in your case halitosis is just a side effect of that tonsil infection. Believe it or not, if not treated in time, tonsillitis can affect the entire body, including your heart and kidney, because the germs which cause tonsillitis, the Streptococcus Hemolyticus, also attack the nerves, kidney and the heart simultaneously!
It goes without saying that if you think you are suffering from either tonsillitis or sinusitis then you should visit a qualified physician without delay! This way you will be able to keep both your health and breathe from getting worse. You should also visit a dentist at least twice a year to keep your periodontal issues in check. Strep throat can make your breath bad since this disease causes the gradual degradation of cells. Thus, by getting rid of strep throat you will automatically get rid of bad breath as well! Another disease related to tonsils which can be the reason behind bad breath is – tonsilloliths, or accumulation of stones in your tonsils. These stones are nothing but created through the steady pile up of dead cells and food leftovers in your tonsil. Unfortunately, it is not easy to get rid of tonsil stones! When you eat your next meal you will be able to literally swallow these white stones with your food but sooner or later a new stone would be formed in there. Oftentimes, tonsilloliths is associated with sinusitis.
Now that you know everything about the causes of bad breath, it is time to learn about the cures too, right? For more information on how to get rid of bad breath fast and how to procure bad breath remedies right from your kitchen, [adrotate banner="5"].