Having good personal hygiene and great health both go hand in hand. Many people do not know the different things that can add up over time to become a major health hazard. Oral hygiene, which is a component of personal hygiene, has increasingly become a significant health factor. The average person brushes their teeth at least once or twice a day, and while it is normal to have a slight mouth odor every morning after waking up, chronic bad breath usually signifies a deeper underlying problem. Severe bad breath is called halitosis, an oral health problem that is marked by smelling breath. In many cases, discovering the cause of smelly breath is the first action plan towards permanently addressing the problem.

Bad breath can be caused by many different things and a few of these things include:

Eating certain foods

Edible things like garlic, for example, have strong smells and can leave a lingering unpleasant smell in the mouth and until this is addressed, the odor can linger in the mouth for hours. One way to address this is by regularly brushing after eating foods that have strong smells, and also, keeping mints nearby so that they can easily serve as a short-term option when you notice that your mouth might have an unpleasant smell.

Improper Cleaning

It is important to properly clean the mouth by adopting a consistent routine of brushing, flossing, scraping, and rinsing. Improper cleaning often results in bad breath only because food particles and other residues remain in the mouth. One way to tackle this problem is to invest in a durable toothbrush, and an effective mouthwash and toothpaste. It may also be worth your time to spend a few extra minutes targeting and brushing every area of your mouth that you may not have always properly cleaned before.

Odor causing bacteria

After any meal, there is always the possibility that certain bacterial elements will remain on the back of the tongue and interact with natural amino acids in the mouth, causing a bad odor. If after regular brushing and cleaning, you do not notice an immediate change, talk to your dentist about ways that you can see better improvements.

Severe health conditions

A lingering bad breath can cause personal discomfort and the unpleasant smell might hint at a cause that is unrelated to your oral health. In many cases, this underlying issue could be linked to something as severe as diabetes or even liver failure. In all of these cases, it is important that you seek the help and guidance of your dentist to determine what your next steps will be. Although it is often rare that bad breath is linked to a severe underlying health problem, it is better to be on the safe side by consulting a doctor sooner rather than later.

It can be embarrassing to have bad breath, especially in social gatherings. If you have any concerns about your oral health or hygiene and can’t seem to address the situation, make sure you visit your dentist on a regular basis to keep tabs on what is going on. Consistent dentist visits can help you to uncover underlying issues that may not be easy to detect. If you have a mouth odor and the dentist can’t figure out what the cause of the odor is, it is a good idea to follow up with your primary healthcare provider for additional insight.