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Would you rather know or not know that you have bad breath? We say it’s better to know because then you can do something about the problem that nearly everyone must contend with at some time. Your Valparaiso dentist at Smiles by Arnold & Associates wants to help you avoid bad breath. Read on to find out what causes bad breath, or halitosis, and what you can do to avoid this offensive odor.

The Causes of Bad Breath

For some people, bad breath is a temporary condition, yet for others, the problem can be chronic. Whether your bad breath is temporary or chronic may be due to the cause. In most instances, the bad breath begins and ends in your mouth. Certain foods contain sulfur. When these break down, they emit VSC’s, or volatile sulfur compounds, which can be quite pungent in odor. This includes foods such as onion, garlic, certain kinds of cheese, fish and beverages that are acidic such as coffee.

Dry mouth can also cause bad breath. Saliva is important for good digestion and it also washes away food particles that would otherwise remain in your mouth and start to smell. Medically termed xerostomia, dry mouth can result from certain types of medication, decreased salivary gland production or mouth breathing.

Some illnesses can also leave a bad smell in your mouth. These include gum disease, respiratory infections, diabetes, Sjogren’s syndrome, acid reflux, a sinus infection and diseases of the liver or kidneys.

Treating Bad Breath with Your Family Dentist in Valparaiso

Because decomposing particles of food in your mouth most often cause bad breath, the first thing you should do is make sure your oral hygiene routine is up to par. Be sure to brush after every meal. And when we say brush that includes your tongue; odor-causing debris love to hang out in the nooks and crannies of your tongue. And floss at least once a day, too. Removing plaque, bacteria, and bits of food can go a long way toward preventing mouth odor. Also, schedule regular dental checkups with your dentist in 46385.

When you purchase breath control products at your grocery or pharmacy, buy alcohol-free products that can help neutralize the acid level of your mouth, slow down bacterial reproduction, and decrease VSC’s. Anything with alcohol content should be avoided because this will increase the acidity of saliva. You can also try chewing sugar-free gum to increase saliva production.

Call Your Dentist in Valparaiso Today

If the problem of bad breath persists even after you’ve tried the above suggestions, then contact Smiles by Arnold, your family dentist in Valparaiso, IN. One of our dentists will be glad to consult with you.