Bad Breath Is Often Caused By Dental Problems by:P., Piero D.D.S.
Bacterial plaque, bad breath and dental problems are all directly linked.
The anaerobic bacteria that live in the mouth cause bad breath or halitosis, dental decay, periodontal disease and gingivitis. Anaerobic means living in the absence of air. These types of bacteria are mostly the ones that cause disease.
Some dental issue definitions are:
Bad breath - the odor produced by bacteria living off food particles, each other and dying tissue. Bad breath can also be caused by other more serious health issues. An example of this is diabetes that can cause acidosis which in turn causes bad breath.
Dental decay - caused by the acidic excrement from the bacteria. The tooth is literally being dissolved by chronically being bathed in this acid.
Gingivitis - the inflammation of the gums caused by your own body trying to fight off the invasion of the bacteria.
Periodontal disease - (perio = around, and dontal = tooth) the loss of bone and tissue attachment around the tooth. It is caused by a microbial invasion around the tooth by anaerobic bacteria.
Between the teeth, along the gum line and on the surface of the tongue is where the film of plaque grows best. The odors and acids accumulate in these areas. The plaque is produced by the bacteria. Bad breath is caused by not being able to keep the population of bacteria under control. In most cases poor oral hygiene is the culprit. Cleaning teeth twice daily is the minimum requirement for reducing the population of bacteria. However, meticulous cleaning is difficult. Tooth brushing does not access in between teeth and often causes ridges and grooves along the gum line. Oral irrigating does not cut through the sticky greasy barrier the plaque produces.
Alternately, bad breath is caused by infections from dental decay, gingivitis, or periodontal disease. Once again, poor oral hygiene is the biggest reason for these infections. Unknown to most people, is the fact that improper flossing may take an infection from one part of the mouth and spread it to a healthy part. The infections also produce dead tissue, which add to the food feeding frenzy of the bacteria. The gasses from the dead tissue are what you smell.
There are other factors that contribute to the bacteria and odor besides food and infection. Smoking, mouth breathing, alcohol based mouth washes and certain medications increase dry mouth. Reduced saliva in the dry mouth does not allow your mouth to remove the bacteria that cause the odor.
In addition, the bad breath odor may be from sources other than the oral cavity. Some medical conditions cause bad breath. Infections in the lungs, nasal cavity or sinuses can cause odor that is associated with bad breath. Bad breath in diabetics is a rather common occurrence. And finally, less likely, but still possible, bad breath can be associated with certain conditions related to malfunctioning kidneys and some cancers.
Because bad breath is so repugnant to both the individual who has it as well as those in which they come in contact with, it is important to maintain a thorough oral hygiene regimen that includes cleaning the teeth at least twice, if not three times every day.
About the author
Want to learn more on how to reduce bad breath, have a white, healthy smile and manage periodontal disease? I have designed and developed a home dental cleaning system that uses the technology of the professional Prophy-Jet to power wash between your teeth and around the gum line.
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From P., Piero DDS a practicing dentist and inventor of Dental Air Force and "Baci The Dental Dog".
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