Transient malodor is essentially caused by foods, tobacco, alcohol and medications and usually lasts no more than 72 hours. Mouthwashes, breath mints, and chewing gum can easily mask it.
The second type is chronic malodor, which may be caused by the following:
- Mouth and tongue.
- Nose and sinuses.
- Systemic disease.
Gum disease is a major culprit in the case of bad breath and our hygienist will monitor the progress of any periodontal disease. Treatment should be followed in order to reduce the bacterial count in the mouth. Proper oral hygiene techniques are essential in bringing bad breath under control.
We are all aware that the spaces between the teeth harbour a large number of odour causing bacteria and proper flossing is needed to keep these under control. What is often overlooked is the rough area on the surface of the tongue, which must be brushed to remove and food particles. A tongue scraper can be very effective in cleansing the back of the tongue. These are not commonly found on the pharmacy shelves, but ask your pharmacist to special order them for you.
Xerostomia or dry mouth is also a condition that can, not only cause bad breath but also cause gum disease and tooth decay due to reduced saliva flow.