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Bad Breath: Symptoms, Causes and Treatment

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Bad Breath

Bad breath is known as halitosis in scientific terms. As you already know, bad breath is a condition in which the mouth gives off an unpleasant smell. This is mainly because of excess bacteria content in the mouth. Obviously, the easiest way in which you can know if you have a bad breath is if someone tells you, or if you can smell it yourself. However, what if no one tells you? How do you know if you have a bad breath? If you do have the problem of a chronic bad breath, you must not leave it untreated. This would only lead to further complications. In the following sections of this article, you would get to know the other distinct symptoms of bad breath, its causes and treatment.


    • A bad or sour taste in the mouth is an almost inevitable symptom of bad breath. This could either be caused by high bacterial content in the mouth, or an acid reflux. Acid reflux is a digestive disorder, in which stomach acid irritates the lining of the food pipe.
    • A whitish or yellowish coating on the tongue is another symptom that you may have a bad breath. This is usually related to the food you eat, or a poor dental hygiene. It is recommended that you use a tongue cleaner every time you brush your teeth.
    • A dry mouthis also a symptom that you may have a bad breath. Saliva is meant to lubricate the mouth and fight off any existing bad odour from the mouth. Lack of saliva means that there is not enough lubrication in your mouth to fight off the bad odors.


    • A low-carbohydrate diet is one of the common causes of bad breath. This leads to the breakdown of fat-producing elements, known as “ketones”, which are known to possess a bad odour. This is the reason why most dentists would recommend you to have a balanced diet, if you have a bad breath.
    • Consumption of tobacco products is one of the leading causes of bad breath. Whether you chew tobacco, or smoke cigarettes, chances are that you have a bad breath. If you are a regular smoker, check the lining on the inside of your teeth, and you would know why! Tobacco is known to instigate terribly bad breaths that just do not go away.
    • Poor dental hygiene is another cause of bad breath. If you do not brush or floss on a regular basis, you simply harbour the bacteria inside your mouth that gives off the bad smell.
    • Diseases like cancer or certain metabolic diseases may also be the reason behind bad breath due to certain chemicals that they produce. Acid reflux, as mentioned earlier, is one such instance.


Using a proper, alcohol-free mouth rinse, such as Biotène is an essential to keep the bad breath away. It is advised that no matter which mouth rinse you use, you rinse with your mouth after every meal you take. Avoid alcohol content when you choose your mouth wash, since strong flavors would only worsen the situation.

In addition, reduce or stop tobacco consumption altogether. This might not be easy, but neither is living with a bad breath, every single day! Have a balanced and healthy diet, and brush and floss your teeth regularly in the morning, and at night.

Remember that the listed symptoms and causes are only few of the most common that are related to bad breath. It is plausible that your bad breath may show some other additional signs, arising out of rare causes. Either way, if you have a sustained bad breath, consult a dentist right away!

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