Bad breath, also known as halitosis, is a concern for many patients. It can cause embarrassment and is usually the result of prolonged, poor oral hygiene. Further exacerbation can come from unhealthy food and lifestyle choices such as smoking cigarettes. Bad breath can also be an indicator of other health problems. Unfortunately, many myths float around regarding how best to treat it. Marshall Family Dental wants to aid you in deciphering true from false when it comes to bad breath treatment and how to best prevent and combat it.
Preventing bad breath is simple; all it takes is consistency! You should always brush your teeth after you eat with toothpaste containing fluoride. When you pair this with flossing, more food particles and bacteria will be removed. Bad breath often emanates from the back of the mouth and tongue, so brushing your tongue in addition to your teeth will keep your breath fresh. Lastly, visiting our office twice yearly for an exam and cleaning is crucial. There is only so much you can do through your at-home hygiene routine, and your dental hygienist will be able to remove hard-to-reach plaque and tartar, which will contribute to bad breath if left unattended for too long.
So what are some common myths about bad breath you should avoid believing?
Myth: Bad breath is a sign of an underlying illness.
Fact: Most bad breath is caused by particular chemicals in your mouth and a coating on your tongue or irritated gums. While it can be a sign of an illness in another area of your body, the bad breath will almost always be accompanied by additional symptoms if this is the case.
Myth: Using mouthwash regularly will cure bad breath.
Fact: We wish this were true, too! While mouthwash can temporarily disguise certain odors from the back of your mouth, it can eventually dry your mouth, making your breath symptoms more intense.
Myth: By breathing into your hands, you can tell if you have bad breath.
Fact: True bad breath is propelled from the back of your mouth when you talk. When breathing into your hands, you produce breath from the front of your mouth and may miss certain smells.
If you’re struggling with bad breath, call our office to make an appointment. Our dental team will give you a thorough exam and cleaning and assess the cause of the problem. Generally, bad breath is something we can treat in-office with a deep cleaning. If your exam reveals it results from a health issue in another part of your body, we will refer you to a specialist.
To aid treatment while at home, ensure you maintain oral hygiene and take extra measures such as flossing and scraping your tongue. The Marshall Family Dental team knows how debilitating bad breath can feel, and we want to do everything we can to aid you in prevention and treatment. To book an appointment or have your questions answered, call us at (903) 938-8315. Read about the effects of dental anxiety here.