It's embarrassing to have bad breath, but it's something that everyone has to deal with at some point in their lives. Who hasn’t eaten a garlicky pasta dinner or an everything bagel only to experience bad breath a few hours later?! While occasional bad breath is common, persistent bad breath could indicate something more serious. Here’s when you should see the dentist for chronic bad breath.
Your Bad Breath Is Caused By Dry Mouth
Halitosis, or chronic bad breath, is frequently caused by dry mouth. Many people have dry mouth in the morning, which causes dreaded morning breath, but the dryness (and bad breath) usually disappears after rehydrating with a glass of water. If your dry mouth lasts all day and you have bad breath as a result, you should consult your dentist.
Throughout the day, saliva in your mouth rinses away bacteria and food debris, so when your mouth is dry, bacteria collects, feeds on the food debris, and causes bad breath. (This environment also causes tooth decay and gum disease, which is another reason to schedule a dental cleaning and consultation with your dentist to address the issue!)
Dry mouth can sometimes be remedied by simply drinking more water throughout the day, but it may be caused by a medication or underlying health concern. We can help you overcome dry mouth with a variety of treatments, including specialized rinses that moisturize the inside of your mouth. Our dental spa can also perform a specialized treatment to remove the odor-causing bacteria from the surfaces of your teeth, which has the added benefit of whitening your smile. We specialize in pain-free cleanings, no waiting, and the highest quality care.
Your Bad Breath Is Accompanied By Other Symptoms
One of the first signs of periodontal disease is bad breath. It's important to seek treatment right away if you have bad breath and also find that your gums are red, inflamed, and bleed easily, as these are all signs of gum disease. This disease begins with minor symptoms such as bad breath and irritation, but if left untreated, it can progress to gum recession, jaw bone loss, and teeth moving, becoming loose, and even falling out.
Tooth decay can also lead to bad breath. A cavity could be causing your halitosis if you have a tooth that is painful, sensitive, or has a visible hole in it. If a cavity is the source of your bad breath, getting it treated and filled will help.
Your Bad Breath Hasn’t Improved With Habit Changes
You brush your teeth twice a day for two minutes. You're a superstar when it comes to flossing. You drink plenty of water, don't smoke, and even clean your tongue when you brush. Why do you still have bad breath?
Give us a call if you feel like you have excellent oral hygiene habits and you still have halitosis. We understand that discussing bad breath can be awkward (even with your dentist!), but bad breath always has a cause, and once we figure out what's causing it, we can resolve it. Our hygiene department specializes in diagnosing and treating halitosis!