Well how many times have you finished a great burger (with onions of course) or had a slice or two of awesome tasting garlic bread, and been told by your mate, girlfriend, boyfriend etc. that your breath, well… was a bit offensive.
Known scientifically as “halitosis” or oral malodor, bad breath is one of the most elusive conditions for which there seems to be few easy solutions, but nonetheless hope.
The primary constituents of bad breath are chemicals called volatile sulfur compounds (VSC), primarily hydrogen sulfide and methyl merceaptan. VSC’s are the byproducts of both human and bacterial cellular breakdown occurring in the “furrows” of the tongue, areas in the back of the throat, in the sinus cavities, and underneath the gum tissue in the presence of gum disease
The Level of Volatile Sulfur compounds that may be present and Thurs constitute how bad “bad” breath will likely be is a function of all of some combination of the following:
- Diet – garlic, onions, curry, strong cheese, etc.
- Infections – sinus, throat, (tonsils), gum disease
- Lack of good oral hygiene – brushing, flossing
- Lack of saliva production – saliva production slows significantly at night during sleep and is caused by various medications
- Various medical conditions like diabetes, some lung and liver disorders.
So what does one do?
Well, the obvious answer is to decide which of the above might be the culprit(s). Begin “checking off” all that might apply to you.
We will, of course, provide you with all the help, needed regarding dentally related factors.
It is worth monitoring, that there are occasions when one believes they have bad breath and it is apparent only to that person. Naturally, this presents a whole new set of issues for which we do not have the space to cover at this time.
In closing to eliminate/control any dental factors that may be involved, it is very important to…
- Get timely check-ups
- Develop a thorough home care routine that would include, (a) brushing the tongue as far back as you can tolerate and perhaps experimenting with a tongue scrapper, and flossing between all teeth at bedtime – (flossing tip) Since all floss is not “created equal” sometimes it has a tendency to slide through the tooth-to-tooth contact and while it may be removing plaque it may not actually pick up small particles of food debris hiding around the fum. So I tie a knot and gently dray the floss through after I do the “up and down” movement to remove plaque and volia? Our comes more stuff that if left would definitely pose a “bad breath” problem.