The main causes of bad breath


Bad breath or halitosis as it should be called, is when an unpleasant odor is released from the mouth when speaking or breathing.

Bad breath or halitosis, is when an unpleasant odor comes out of our mouth, causing discomfort. The sensation of bad breath is often not perceived by the individual, and can be assessed in a simple way by someone close to you, or puffing into your hands in the shape of a cup.

We must not forget that this condition is not a disease, but a sign that something is not right in our body. In the mouth the main cause is the accumulation of bacteria in a layer called dentobacterial plaque or tartar, which is adhered to the teeth due to poor oral hygiene.

By treating the cause of halitosis, not only is a possible cause of tooth loss being treated, but we are also solving psychological problems that can be developed because of the social isolation that people with halitosis tend to have.

Contrary to popular belief, most causes of bad breath are related to the oral cavity, not the stomach. When it is persistent, it tends to improve oral hygiene, but it is often too late as there may already be a problem installed, which can only be solved with the help of the dentist.

Causes of halitosis of origin in the mouth

Inflamed gum and tooth decay

The gum disease known as periodontitis or gingivitis and tooth decay are diseases that can develop when oral hygiene is poor. In both there is an abnormal increase in bacteria that release gases with a strong odor.


The coating, which is the accumulation of bacteria on the tongue, is also among the main causes of halitosis, and this situation occurs due to poor tongue hygiene during tooth brushing.

Dry mouth

Some people produce a small amount of saliva leading to dry mouth, which increases the reproduction of bacteria that cause bad breath in the mouth.

Poorly adapted dentures, crooked teeth and retained teeth

There are also some situations in the mouth that make oral hygiene difficult, which increases the number of undesirable bacteria. Among them are poorly adapted dental prostheses, semi-retained or crooked teeth, or even the use of orthodontic appliances. In these situations we must further strengthen the hygiene of our teeth.

Causes of non-oral origin

There are some diseases that alter the odor of our breath with gastroenteritis, diabetes, liver, kidney and throat infections.

Temporary halitosis

It can also happen, that the breath suffers a change in the odor when we eat some foods with strong flavor like onion, garlic, or coffee. The habit of smoking and alcohol consumption also leads to a change in breath. Morning breath is also temporary, and happens due to the long period of fasting and reduced salivary flow during sleep.

How to prevent?

The main cause of bad breath in the mouth is the increase in the number of bacteria, and daily drinking more water to increase the flow of saliva and properly sanitize the mouth, prevent bad breath. Brushing your teeth at least twice a day, flossing, cleaning your tongue, changing your toothbrush every 3 months, and visiting your dentist at least once a year are basic habits that help halitosis prevention.

The consumption of fibrous foods such as apples and carrots, promote a natural cleaning mainly between the teeth and helps to remove unwanted bacteria.

The diagnosis at the dentist

Sometimes we use products with smells or even lozenges to mask the bad odor, but that do not address the real cause of the problem.

If you notice that bad breath becomes persistent, it's probably time to ask for help. It is very difficult to leave prejudice aside and look for the dentist, but in most cases only with clinical intervention we can solve the problem.

What is the treatment of halitosis

In the consultation, the dentist looks for possible causes of bad breath, and proposes a treatment. In most cases, you can clean your teeth by removing excess bacteria on your teeth and sometimes tartar, which is strongly adhered to the tooth and does not come out with tooth brushing.


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