Anyone who has bad breath can tell you how difficult it is to deal with the condition. Whenever someone gets close, you feel like you want to run or hide away just so the other person won't collapse after inhaling your foul breath. Sometimes, you never want to open your mouth anymore. But it's not just your confidence that's at stake here. Your health can also be affected. To find out how you can finally resolve this embarrassing problem, get to know more about bad breath, also known as halitosis.
What Causes Bad Breath?
There are three primary factors that can lead to bad breath:
1) Dietary Choices
What you eat can affect your breath since all the foods that you take in begin to be broken down in your mouth. When the food is digested and absorbed in the bloodstream, it is carried to the lungs and given off in your breath. For that reason, some foods with strong odors such as garlic and onions for example cannot be masked even with mouthwash. Even if you brush and floss, the odor will not go away until the food has passed through the body completely.
2) Poor Dental Hygiene
Poor habits, meanwhile, can lead to bad breath because food particles that get stuck in between the teeth promote the growth of bacteria. Then the bacteria cause the bad breath. Food particles can also give off foul odor if not cleaned properly. Smoking and chewing tobacco products can also result in bad breath along with stained teeth and irritated gums.
3) Underlying Dental and Medical Conditions
See below descriptions regarding underlying dental and medical conditions.
How Does Bad Breath Affect Confidence?
A person with bad breath will not have the same confidence that other people have. In their minds, they are always worried that anyone they talk to will be able to smell their breaths and get turned off. They fear that these people will think they are not brushing their teeth or they have poor dental hygiene.
This is to the point where a person with bad breath will do whatever it takes to avoid close interaction or sometimes, even socialization altogether. At work, instead of mingling and making friends with co-workers, an employee with halitosis will prefer to be by him/herself because of the low confidence level. This can affect his/her overall emotional well-being in the long run.
How Does Bad Breath Affect Health?
It's not only the confidence that suffers but also possibly one's health. While bad breath doesn't directly cause an illness, it can be a sign of an underlying medical or dental condition.
- Periodontal Disease
Persistent bad breath can be a sign of periodontal disease, which is caused by buildup of plaque on teeth. This causes toxins to form in the mouth and irritate the gums. Gum and jawbone damage as well as tooth loss can be the consequences if gum disease is not treated.
Another condition that can bring bad breath is xerostomia, which is characterized by having insufficient saliva inside the mouth.
Other conditions that cause bad breath include:
- postnasal drip
- chronic acid reflux
- chronic sinus infections
- liver or kidney problems
- respiratory tract infections such as bronchitis or pneumonia