What causes bad breath?

calendario 14-Jun-2016
Dra. Libertad Caro
Specialist in Periodontology and Dental Implantology

Halitosis, or bad breath, is a condition that affects the daily lives of many people. It is an unpleasant feeling that, in addition to be a problem in our personal relationships, may involve a bad state of health of our mouth. We know that 10% of halitosis cases are due to side effects of some diseases or treatments.

But what about the other 90%? This is usually caused due to poor oral hygiene. Below we expose the main causes.

Some of them are usually temporary and curable:

  • The decrease in saliva at night generates bacteria which produces malodorous gases. This is nothing less than the morning breath, normal and correctable with daily hygiene.
  • Changes in salivary glands also affects the hygiene. The less saliva, greater chance of tooth decay, bacteria and diseases.
  • Smoking also causes halitosis.
  • Low-calorie diets and skipping mealtimes.
  • Food such as onions or garlic produce a strong and distinctive breath, although temporary.

However, others come from changes in our health:

  • Halitosis caused by periodontal disease and caries.
  • The existence of ulcers or viral, bacterial or fungal infections.
  • It can be a side effect of cancer treatment.
  • Symptom of digestive, respiratory and systemic diseases such as poorly controlled diabetes, kidney problems or liver dysfunction.

As we can see, bad breath gives us clues about our health and its causes can be varied. Therefore, in case of any doubt or suspicion, we should see our dentist.