What Are the Factors That Lead to Bad Breath?

Posted by College Family Dentistry Oct 19, 2022

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Bad breath, or halitosis, is a rather embarrassing problem to have. Bad breath can stem from a variety of causes. Listed below are a few of them:

Medical Conditions

Infection in the mouth can lead to bad breath. Bacteria can build up and cause plaque and tartar buildup, leading to infection in the body. Gum disease can also cause bad breath. Oral yeast infections can cause bad odors to emanate from the mouth. Treating the underlying condition may solve the problem. It can also help to brush and floss more frequently and thoroughly to keep the mouth cleaner.

Certain medical conditions can also result in bad breath. Diabetes, for example, causes dry mouth, and increasing amounts of glucose in the saliva can cause an unpleasant odor. Kidney failure can result in kidney failure waste being released into the urine, which can affect the smell of the breath. A lack of proteins in the blood, such as from liver disease or malnutrition, can also be a reason for unpleasant breath.


Certain foods you eat can cause bad breath to form due to odors that linger in your mouth after eating. This is especially true if you eat garlic, onions, or tuna fish. Your body digests these smells, and bacteria in your body release sulfur compounds that cause your breath to smell bad.

If you experience chronic bad breath after meals, then consider brushing your teeth more often. Consider using toothpaste with fluoride in it to help fight tooth decay as well.

Tobacco Use

The most common cause of bad breath is tobacco use, whether smoking or using chewing tobacco. Much like any other part of the body, the mouth and tongue can become damaged from tobacco use over time, which can cause unpleasant breath odors. In addition to causing noticeable odors, tobacco products can also cause more serious health concerns like gum disease or oral cancer. Patients who smoke or use chew products should talk to their dentist about quitting as soon as possible.

Dry Mouth

The most common cause of bad breath is a dry mouth. The saliva in your mouth not only cleans your teeth but also helps control bacteria that cause bad breath. When your mouth is dry due to dehydration or illness, your ability to produce saliva is reduced. This lack of saliva leads to bacterial overgrowth in the mouth and unpleasant odors. Drinking more water is a simple solution for this. If the problem persists, see your dentist. They can help treat the underlying causes.

Contact our office at (225) 926-4640 today to learn more and to schedule your next appointment with us. You can also visit our dentist in Baton Rouge, LA, at 4616 Concord Avenue, Baton Rouge, LA, 70808. We look forward to helping you achieve and maintain the healthiest smile possible.

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