Bad breath. It happens to all of us. And anyone who tells you otherwise is probably not being truthful, because, well, who really wants to talk about bad breath? It isn't very pleasant, but in most cases, it goes away with normal brushing and flossing. But, what causes bad breath? Here are five common causes and five solutions - and some tips on what to do if bad breath just won't go away.

The Causes of Bad Breath

As we said, many different things can cause bad breath. Here are the most common culprits:

Food. Love garlic, but hate its effects on your breath? Garlic, onions and some other strongly flavored foods can result in smelly breath. So can drinking too much coffee or tea. In most cases, you can just freshen up with a quick brushing session, a mouth rinse or a piece of sugar-free gum or a mint.
Bacteria. Like it or not, there are a ton of bacteria that live in your mouth. These bacteria, both good and bad, can cause your breath to be stinky, especially the bacteria that eat the food debris that gets left behind in your mouth and teeth. Help eliminate bad breath by brushing and flossing regularly to get rid of food bits. You can also pop in a piece of sugar-free gum to help grab any bits of food you may have missed.
Tobacco use. Do you smoke or chew tobacco? Not only can these behaviors cause bad breath, but they can also put you at risk of serious health and dental health problems. Solution? Stop tobacco use. Ask us how we can help by calling us now.

More serious causes of bad breath include:

Dental conditions. Oral health problems such as gum disease, tooth decay and chronic dry mouth can cause bad breath.
Health conditions. If you're experiencing chronic bad breath that can't be brushed or flossed away, it may be worth a trip to the dentist to rule out dental health issues. If your dentist hasn't found a problem, it's time to call the doctor to see if other medical problems, including liver disease, acid reflux and diabetes, may be an issue.

If bad breath is making you self-conscious or concerned, here are a few ways you can improve your breath:

  • Brush and floss regularly.
  • Ask us about mouthwashes or mouth rinses that can help to treat the bacteria in your mouth in between flossing and brushing.
  • Be sure to clean your dentures regularly and thoroughly. This goes for other types of oral appliances, too.
  • Stop smoking and using tobacco.
  • Avoid foods that can cause bad breath.
  • Eat healthy, crunchy foods such as broccoli, carrots and apples to help keep your teeth healthy and sticky dental plaque away.

Most importantly for helping you combat your bad breath: Call us. If you're struggling with persistent bad breath, it's time to call Legends Dental at 254-294-4040 to schedule an appointment. We're here for you. Call to schedule a consultation today.