Gum disease is caused by the buildup of plaque on teeth. Bacteria cause the formation of toxins to form, which irritate the gums. If gum disease continues untreated, it can damage the gums and jawbone.
Other causes of bad breath include poorly fitting dental appliances, yeast infections of the mouth, and cavities.
The medical condition dry mouth also can cause bad breath. Saliva is necessary to moisten the mouth, neutralize acids produced by plaque, and wash away dead cells that accumulate on the tongue, gums, and cheeks. If not removed, these cells decompose and can cause bad breath. Dry mouth may be a side effect of various medications, salivary gland problems, or continuous breathing through the mouth. There are other underlying diseases that may cause bad breath as well. If your dentist finds nothing wrong with your mouth, you will need to consult your physician.
Bad breath can be reduced or prevented if you:
- Practice good oral hygiene. Brush twice a day with fluoride toothpaste to remove food debris and plaque.
- See your dentist regularly — at least twice a year.
- Stop smoking and chewing tobacco-based products.
- Drink lots of water.
- Keep a log of the foods you eat(Source: WebMD).
In most cases, your dentist can treat the cause of bad breath. If your dentist determines that your mouth is healthy and the odor is not of oral origin, you may be referred to your family doctor or to a specialist to determine the odor source and treatment plan. If the odor is due to gum disease, for example, your dentist can either treat the disease or refer you to a periodontist, a dentist who specializes in treating gum conditions.
For more information on your oral health call Dr. Anthony Yamada in Manhattan Beach, CA at 310-567-2595 or visit www.anthonyyamadadds.com.
Dr. Anthony Yamada also proudly accepts patients from Manhattan Beach, Ranchos Palos Verdes, Los Angeles, Redondo Beach, Palos Verdes Estates, Torrance, Playa Del Rey, and surrounding areas.