What Is Halitosis?
Halitosis is a condition in which a person emanates an unattractive odor from their mouth. This is often called bad breath.
What does halitosis smell like? The quick answer is: It varies. The underlying causes can impact the smell. Some people might find signs of halitosis embarrassing, so much so that they’re reluctant to even talk to their dentist. Know that you’re not alone; it’s relatively common and often easy to treat and prevent halitosis.
There are three common halitosis causes that you, your dentist and perhaps your doctor can discuss to help you banish bad breath and improve your whole-mouth health.
Around 80% of what causes halitosis is oral issues from bacteria buildup, such as cavities, gum disease, cracked fillings and less-than-clean dentures. Bacteria buildup often occurs in places a toothbrush can’t reach. It then can lead to these oral issues and persistent bad breath.
High-protein,low-carbohydrate diets; too many sweets; and a steady fare of onions and garlic can cause halitosis. So will excessive coffee and alcohol consumption. In addition, tobacco users run an even higher risk of chronic bad breath.
Though rare, medical conditions, such as lung disease, certain cancers, tonsil infections, blood disorders and kidney disease can all cause halitosis. A more common medical cause is diabetes because of fluctuating blood sugar levels. Asthma, acid reflux, postnasal drip and even a common sinus infection, due to mucus buildup, also can cause halitosis and/or bad breath.
Because most halitosis cases start inside the mouth, your first step for halitosis treatment should be to re-evaluate your basic oral care routine