woman holding hand over mouth due to bad breath

Chronic Bad Breath? You May Need to Visit the Dentist

Team Oral Health

You might feel embarrassed about your bad breath, but you should never hesitate to bring it up with your dentist—that’s what we’re here for! According to the American Dental Association, at least 50 percent of Americans suffer from halitosis (the technical term for bad breath) at some point in their lives. While bad breath is often a temporary issue caused by something we’ve eaten, when you have chronic bad breath, there might be a more serious issue at play.

Bad Breath Caused By Dry Mouth

Dry mouth is one of the most common causes of bad breath. If you’ve ever woken up with that “cotton mouth” feeling in the morning and a foul taste in your mouth, you’ve suffered from bad breath caused by dry mouth. In most patients, this morning breath is easily resolved by starting the day with a big glass of water and brushing their teeth, but for others, dry mouth persists all day long.

The simplest explanation for chronic dry mouth is that you’re not drinking enough water, but when even this doesn’t improve your symptoms, it could be that your dry mouth is caused by a medication you’re taking or some other underlying health issue.

When you don’t have the saliva needed to wash away food debris and bacteria throughout the day, it causes bad breath and other dental problems, so it’s important to seek treatment. You may need to sip on water all day long or carry sugar-free gum and lozenges for those times when you can’t drink; in more severe cases, we can prescribe medications that stimulate saliva production or recommend special mouth rinses formulated for dry mouth. Ask us about your options during your next dental exam.

Bad Breath Caused By Gum Disease

Bad breath is one of the earliest signs of gum disease, along with changes in gum color, swelling, and bleeding. If you’re experiencing a combination of these symptoms, give us a call so we can schedule an appointment for you as soon as possible.

Gum disease starts with mild symptoms, but it’s an active infection that attacks your gums, teeth, and jawbone. Eventually, your gums will start to recede and your teeth may start to loosen and even fall out. Treating gum disease is simple when it’s caught early—a minimally-invasive non-surgical treatment called scaling and root planing can reverse gum disease and restore your oral health.

Bad Breath Caused By Medical Issues

Sometimes you’ve tried everything and you still can’t figure out what’s causing your bad breath. If we don’t see any reason why you’re suffering from chronic halitosis, we recommend making an appointment to see your primary care physician.

When your oral health isn’t causing your bad breath, it likely has a medical cause. Allergies, sinus infections, GERD, and tonsil issues can all cause bad breath. Resolving your symptoms might be as simple as taking a daily antacid!

Learn More About Bad Breath

To determine the cause of your bad breath and find the best solution for your needs, contact us today at 301-933-3903 to schedule an appointment at Kensington Natural Smiles.