Having bad breath can have a significant impact on your life, from your social interactions to your confidence in the workplace. It can even be a sign of a more serious condition, such as gum disease. The foods you eat can affect your oral health, including your breath. Foods like garlic and onions, or any food, are absorbed into the bloodstream and can affect your breath until they leave the body.
Without brushing and flossing your teeth properly and regularly, and without routine dental exams, food can build up on your teeth, gums, and tongue and rot. This causes an unpleasant smell and taste in the mouth. Dentures that aren't cleaned properly can also accumulate bacteria, fungi, and food particles, leading to halitosis. The main symptom of halitosis is a bad smell from the mouth that is considered to be beyond a socially acceptable level.
The smell may worsen in the morning or after smoking, drinking coffee, or eating certain foods, such as garlic. When your body breaks down fat, it releases chemicals that can cause an unpleasant smell in your breath. Bad breath can be the result of poor dental health habits and can be a sign of other health problems. To assess how your own breath smells, ask a close friend or family member to confirm your questions about bad breath.
The intensity of the bad smell is usually evaluated by smelling the air that the person exhales through the nose or mouth, or by judging the smell of a scrape of the tongue, a piece of dental floss, or a dental appliance, such as a night protector. Dry mouth can be caused by certain medications, a salivary gland disorder, or by always breathing through the mouth instead of through the nose. A new study published in the International Journal of Dental Hygiene looked at the impact of bad breath on people's quality of life and found that people with bad breath were twice as unhappy as those who didn't. Tests can be performed to confirm the presence of halitosis by measuring the intensity of bad breath on a predefined scale and using instruments to detect specific compounds related to halitosis.
Bad breath is often considered one of the top health mistakes and now new research has suggested that eliminating halitosis can dramatically increase happiness. Some people worry too much about their breath even though they have little or no smell in their mouths, while others have bad breath and don't know it. Dry mouth can be a side effect of several medications, salivary gland problems, or continuous breathing through the mouth. By questioning people about specific aspects of their daily lives, the study found that people with bad breath had 500% more negative experiences than those with fresh breath.