Why You Should See Your Dentist for Chronic Bad Breath

Chances are no one likes to admit that they have bad breath, or halitosis as it's called, but it can happen to anyone at any time. Food particles can get stuck between teeth and break down and leave bacteria and germs behind, or if you eat foods that have a naturally foul odor such as onions or garlic, these odors can linger in your breath. However, chronic bad breath is not something to ignore and should be treated by a dentist, as it may indicate a serious problem with your oral health or even your health overall. Note why it's vital you talk to your dentist about this problem.

1. Dry mouth

One common cause of bad breath is dry mouth, or the lack of healthy saliva production. Saliva is needed to rinse food particles away and keep the mouth healthy, and when the body doesn't produce enough saliva, those food particles and their resultants germs and bacteria linger on the teeth. Not only does this make your breath bad but it can also lead to cavities and other oral health issues. Those food particles can wear away the teeth and cause damage, so dry mouth should be treated either with medication or topical rinses.

2. Acid reflux

Do you notice an acidic, burning taste in your mouth along with your bad breath? Do you have a burning sensation or pressure along the stomach or midsection? This may be acid reflux, when stomach acids spill over the stomach itself and back up into the esophagus. This can cause bad breath as stomach acids themselves do not have a pleasant odor, and the food that's in your stomach can also cause bad breath as it travels back up your esophagus. More than unpleasant, this condition can cause damage to your esophagus if left untreated.

3. Infections

Certain infections can also cause bad breath, including sinus infections or upper respiratory tract infections likes pneumonia or bronchitis. Some minor infections may heal on their own but sometimes they will travel to weaker areas of the body and in turn, get stronger themselves. You may not even realize that you have certain infections and may not have them addressed medically, but they can result in chronic bad breath. If you feel pain or pressure in the sinus cavities or other symptoms such as a hacking cough along with your bad breath, see a dentist as soon as you can.