Tuesday 26 March 2019 ,
Tuesday 26 March 2019 ,
Latest News
  • Coaching centers to remain closed from Apr 1 to May 6
  • UN wants to know modalities of Rohingya relocation to Bhasan Char
  • Govt aims to reach benefits of independence to villagers: PM
  • 12 personalities, 1 organisation receive Independence Award
18 February, 2019 00:00 00 AM

Everything you need to know about bad breath

MedicalNewsToday
Everything you need to know about bad breath

Tim Newman

Bad breath affects an estimated 25 percent of people. There are a number of possible causes of halitosis, but the vast majority come down to oral hygiene.

It is also known as halitosis or fetor oris. Halitosis can cause significant worry, embarrassment, and anxiety but it is relatively easy to remedy.

Fast facts on bad breath

Here are some key points about bad breath. More detail and supporting information is in the main article.

Bad breath is estimated to affect 1 in 4 people globally.

The most common cause of halitosis is bad oral hygiene.

If particles of food are left in the mouth, their breakdown by bacteria produces sulfur compounds.

Keeping the mouth hydrated can reduce mouth odor.

The best treatment for bad breath is regular brushing, flossing, and hydration.

What is halitosis?

 Bad breath is a common problem that can cause significant psychological distress. There are a number of potential causes and treatments available.

Anyone can suffer from bad breath. It is estimated that 1 in 4 people have bad breath on a regular basis.

Halitosis is the third most common reason that people seek dental care, after tooth decay and gum disease.

Simple home remedies and lifestyle changes, such as improved dental hygiene and quitting smoking, can often remove the issue. If bad breath persists, however, it is advisable to visit a doctor to check for underlying causes.

Treatment

The best method to reduce halitosis is good oral hygiene. This ensures that cavities are avoided and reduces the likelihood of gum disease.

It is recommended that individuals visit the dentist for a check-up and cleaning twice a year.

The dentist may recommend a toothpaste that includes an antibacterial agent or an antibacterial mouthwash.

Alternatively, if gum disease is present, professional cleaning may be necessary to clear out the build-up of bacteria in pockets between the gums and teeth.

Causes

Potential causes of bad breath include:

Tobacco: Tobacco products cause their own types of mouth odor. Additionally, they increase the chances of gum disease which can also cause bad breath.

Food: The breakdown of food particles stuck in the teeth can cause odors. Some foods such as onions and garlic can also cause bad breath. After they are digested, their breakdown products are carried in the blood to the lungs where they can affect the breath.

Dry mouth: Saliva naturally cleans the mouth. If the mouth is naturally dry or dry due to a specific disease, such as xerostomia, odors can build up.

Dental hygiene: Brushing and flossing ensure the removal of small particles of food that can build up and slowly break down, producing odor.

A film of bacteria called plaque builds up if brushing is not regular. This plaque can irritate the gums and cause inflammation between the teeth and gums called periodontitis. Dentures that are not cleaned regularly or properly can also harbor bacteria that cause halitosis.

Crash diets: Fasting and low-carbohydrate eating programs can produce halitosis. This is due to the breakdown of fats producing chemicals called ketones. These ketones have a strong aroma.

Drugs: Certain medications can reduce saliva and, therefore, increase odors. Other drugs can produce odors as they breakdown and release chemicals in the breath. Examples include nitrates used to treat angina, some chemotherapy chemicals, and some tranquilizers, such as phenothiazines. Individuals who take vitamin supplements in large doses can also be prone to bad breath.

Mouth, nose, and throat conditions: Sometimes, small, bacteria-covered stones can form on the tonsils at the back of the throat and produce odor. Also, infections or inflammation in the nose, throat, or sinuses can cause halitosis.

Foreign body: Bad breath can be caused if they have a foreign body lodged in their nasal cavity, especially in children.

Diseases: Some cancers, liver failure, and other metabolic diseases can cause halitosis, due to the specific mixes of chemicals that they produce. Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) can cause bad breath due to the regular reflux of stomach acids.

Rarer causes of bad breath

As mentioned earlier, the most common reason for bad breath is oral hygiene, but other situations can also be to blame.

Rarer causes of bad breath include:

Ketoacidosis: When the insulin levels of a person with diabetes are very low, their bodies can no longer use sugar and begin to use fat stores instead. When fat is broken down, ketones are produced and build up. Ketones can be poisonous when found in large numbers and produce a distinctive and unpleasant breath odor. Ketoacidosis is a serious and potentially life-threatening condition.

Bowel obstruction: Breath can smell like feces if there has been a prolonged period of vomiting, especially if a bowel obstruction is present.

Bronchiectasis: This is a long-term condition in which airways become wider than normal, allowing for a build-up of mucus that leads to bad breath.

Aspiration pneumonia: A swelling or infection in the lungs or airways due to inhaling vomit, saliva, food, or liquids.

Symptoms

The specific odor of breath can vary depending on the cause of the problem. It is best to ask a close friend or relative to gauge your mouth odor, as it can be difficult to assess it yourself.

If no one is available, one way of checking the odor is to lick your wrist, leave it to dry, and then smell it. A bad smell on this area of the wrist is likely to suggest that you have halitosis.

Some individuals are concerned about their breath even though they may have little or no mouth odor. This condition is called halitophobia and can lead to obsessive mouth-cleansing behavior.

Home remedies

 Oral hygiene is the key to most bad breath issues.

Other lifestyle changes and home remedies for bad breath include:

Brush the teeth: Be sure to brush at least twice a day, preferably after each meal.

Floss: Flossing reduces the build-up of food particles and plaque from between the teeth. Brushing only cleans around 60 percent of the surface of the tooth.

Clean dentures: Anything that goes into your mouth, including dentures, a bridge, or a mouth guard, should be cleaned as recommended on a daily basis. Cleaning prevents the bacteria from building up and being transferred back into the mouth. Changing toothbrush every 2 to 3 months is also important for similar reasons.

Brush tongue: Bacteria, food, and dead cells commonly build up on the tongue, especially in smokers or those with a particularly dry mouth. A tongue scraper can sometimes be useful.

Avoid dry mouth: Drink plenty of water. Avoid alcohol and tobacco, both of which dehydrate the mouth. Chewing gum or sucking a sweet, preferably sugar-free, can help stimulate the production of saliva. If the mouth is chronically dry, a doctor may prescribe medication that stimulates the flow of saliva.

Diet: Avoid onions, garlic, and spicy food. Sugary foods are also linked to bad breath. Reduce coffee and alcohol consumption. Eating a breakfast that includes rough foods can help clean the back of the tongue.

If breath odor persists despite controlling these factors, it is recommended that an individual visits a doctor for further tests to rule out other conditions.

Diagnosis

Often, a dentist will simply smell the breath of a person with suspected halitosis and rate the odor on a six-point intensity scale. The dentist may scrape the back of the tongue and smell the scrapings as this area can often be a source of the aroma.

There are a variety of sophisticated detectors that can rate odor more precisely.

They include the following:

Halimeter: This detects low levels of sulfur.

Gas chromatography: This test measures three volatile sulfur compounds: Hydrogen sulfide, methyl mercaptan, and dimethyl sulfide.

BANA test: This measures levels of a specific enzyme produced by halitosis-causing bacteria.

Beta-galactosidase test: Levels of the enzyme beta-galactosidase have been found to correlate with mouth odor.

The dentist will then be able to identify the likely cause of the bad breath.

 

Comments

Most Viewed
Digital Edition
More story
From the Editor

From the Editor

Our cover story this week is Public Health which is the science of protecting and improving the health of communities through education, promotion of…
What is public health?

What is public health?

Public health is the science of protecting and improving the health of communities through education, promotion of healthy lifestyles, and research for…
WHO on public health and primary care

WHO on public health and primary care

Modern primary health care emerged when gross health inequalities became a global concern. The Declaration of Alma-Ata, 40 years ago, endorsed primary…
Infection prevention and control

Infection prevention and control

Infection prevention and control (IPC) is a scientific approach and practical solution designed to prevent harm caused by infection to patients and health…
Protecting workers' health

Protecting workers' health

Key facts •    In many countries more than half of workers are employed in the informal sector with no social protection for seeking…
Climate change-driven water salinity linked to hypertension in coastal Bangladesh

Climate change-driven water salinity linked to hypertension in coastal Bangladesh

MUHAMMAD NABIL Elevated blood pressure was found more prevalent in some Bangladeshi coastal communities and a new icddr,b study argues that higher water…
HIV/AIDS: Hope of a cure

HIV/AIDS: Hope of a cure

Michelle Roberts Although the finding is exciting, it is not offering up a new treatment for the millions of people around the world living with HIV.…
Brain clue to 'broken heart' syndrome

Brain clue to 'broken heart' syndrome

Your heart can be damaged after a sad event and it may be your brain's doing, experts believe. Swiss researchers have been studying people with a…
8 Ways to relieve gas pain fast

8 Ways to relieve gas pain fast

BARBARA BOLEN, PHD    Whatever gas symptoms you experience—burping, passing gas, belly pain, or bloating—while unpleasant or even…
U.S. Ambassador H. E. Earl R. Miller lauds icddr,b TB screening centre model

U.S. Ambassador H. E. Earl R. Miller lauds icddr,b TB screening centre model

The U.S. Ambassador to Bangladesh H.E. Earl R. Miller visited an icddr,b tuberculosis screening centre located in old part of the city, Dholaikhal, on…
People don't become 'adults' until their 30s, say scientists

People don't become 'adults' until their 30s, say scientists

Have you ever been told to "grow up" in your 20s or need an excuse as to why you still find cat videos on the internet really funny? Well now…
Stopping Aspirin 3 months after stent is safe, study finds

Stopping Aspirin 3 months after stent is safe, study finds

Heart patients who get a stent to prop open a blocked artery are typically put on a powerful anti-clotting drug and aspirin for a full year after their…
FDA approves Trazimera (trastuzumab-qyyp) for the treatment of Breast Cancer, Gastric Cancer

FDA approves Trazimera (trastuzumab-qyyp) for the treatment of Breast Cancer, Gastric Cancer

Pfizer Inc. recently announced the United States (U.S.) Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Trazimera (trastuzumab-qyyp), a biosimilar to…

Copyright © All right reserved.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Disclaimer & Privacy Policy
....................................................
About Us
....................................................
Contact Us
....................................................
Advertisement
....................................................
Subscription

Powered by : Frog Hosting