Bad breath is a common problem that can be caused by a variety of factors. Odor-producing bacteria that grow in the mouth are the main culprits, and when you don't brush or floss regularly, these bacteria can build up on pieces of food left in your mouth and between your teeth. This leads to the release of sulfur compounds, which create an unpleasant smell. Certain foods, health conditions, and habits can also contribute to bad breath.
Alcohol consumption is one of the most common causes, as it decreases saliva production and creates an environment where bacteria can thrive. Oral infections, gum disease, allergies, lactose intolerance, and diabetes can also cause bad breath. In many cases, you can improve bad breath with proper and consistent dental hygiene. If simple self-care techniques don't solve the problem, it's important to see your dentist or doctor to make sure there isn't a more serious condition that's causing your halitosis.
If you have questions about your own breath, ask a close friend or family member to confirm your suspicions. Smoking and chewing tobacco are also major contributors to bad breath. When you grind them, you create allicin, a substance responsible for the strong aroma of garlic and the smell you associate with it. Eating sugary foods can also lead to bad breath, as bacteria feed on sugars and turn candies into bitter smells.
In addition to leaving your mouth smelling like an ashtray, these bacteria can damage gum tissue and cause gum disease.If you're experiencing bad breath that won't go away with proper dental hygiene, it's important to see your healthcare provider to rule out any underlying conditions that may be causing it. With the right diagnosis and treatment plan, you can get rid of bad breath for good.