Halloween Teeth 2020 543

CAN YOU BELIEVE HALLOWEEN is coming up so soon? It’s always a fun time of year, with the spooky movies, the fun decorations, the costumes, and the tasty treats. We’re not here to drop toothbrushes in anyone’s candy buckets, but we do want to offer some tips on how our patients can make Halloween as healthy for their teeth as possible.

The Worst Halloween Candy for Our Teeth

Hard, sour, and sticky candies are definitely in the bad category. It takes time for hard candy to dissolve, which means an extended sugar bath for the teeth. Sticky candy adheres to our teeth and gums, which brings all that sugar directly to the harmful bacteria. Sour candy is acidic as well as sugary, making it doubly harmful.

Better Treats for Dental Health

So what’s the good news after all that? Chocolate! It contains compounds like flavonoids and polyphenols, which limit oral bacteria, slow tooth decay, and fight bad breath. However, the more sugar there is in it, the more it cancels out the good effects, which is why dentists prefer dark chocolate. If it contains nuts, that’s even better, unless you have a nut allergy or orthodontic appliance.

Gingivitis and more advanced forms of gum disease can actually destroy the supporting gum tissue and bone around the roots of our teeth. This is what makes gum disease the main cause of gum recession. To keep the gums healthy, a daily oral hygiene routine is critical, but so are regular professional cleanings at a dental practice. Only the pros can remove plaque that has hardened into tartar, and the longer tartar is allowed to remain, the more it will irritate the gums.

Minimizing Sugar’s Effects on Your Teeth

If you have a sweet tooth that won’t be denied, there are other ways to fight back against the effect sugar has on teeth, such as:

  • Keep the candy consumption to mealtimes. Snacking on it between meals gives oral bacteria an all-day sugar buffet, but only eating it at mealtimes gives your saliva a chance to wash away traces of sugar and neutralize your oral pH.
  • Follow the candy with a drink of water. That will rinse off some of the sugar.
  • Don’t slack on brushing and flossing! These daily habits are essential to keep sugar from doing lasting harm to tooth enamel.

Make Use of the Dentist

Another resource you have for keeping your teeth healthy even with all the candy Halloween brings is the dentist. Make sure you’re sticking to your usual twice-yearly appointments so the dentist can make sure you don’t have any post-Halloween cavities!

Wishing all our patients a healthy, happy Halloween!

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The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

Dental Fads 2020 543

GENERALLY SPEAKING, INFLUENCERS are not a great source of health advice. One person’s experience with a technique or product is not going to be universal, and real understanding of the way the human body works comes from years of study and training, not a quick google search. With that in mind, there are a few specific oral health fads and cosmetic dental trends we want to warn our patients about.

Cosmetic Dentistry Don’ts

1. Don’t widen a tooth gap for a “cuter” look.

Enamel reshaping can be a very legitimate procedure. If a tooth has a minor chip or is oddly shaped, enamel reshaping can help it match its neighbors. Enamel reshaping can also smooth out the little bumps (mamelons) on the ends of adult teeth if they aren’t wearing away on their own. But to widen a gap just to look cute, as happened on America’s Next Top Model? The (alleged) cosmetic appeal does not outweigh the potential damage to the teeth and how they fit together.

2. Don’t get vampire fangs.

It seems a different movie monster is popular every decade, but that doesn’t mean we should try to look like them. Changing the shape of your teeth to make them look like fangs is going to remove a lot of enamel, which won’t grow back. A better idea is to get a good pair of removable custom fangs to go over your normal, healthy teeth.

3. Don’t get gems embedded in your teeth.

We all want sparkling smiles, but we don’t recommend taking that as literally as getting gems surgically implanted in your teeth. That’s a recipe for cavities and regret.

Dental Health Don’ts

1. Don’t clean your teeth with lemon juice.

As part of the “all-natural remedies” craze, some people are trying lemon juice and other household substances like apple cider vinegar and baking soda to clean their teeth. Lemon juice is highly acidic. Tooth enamel might be very hard, but it is extremely vulnerable to acid erosion, so acidic substances make very counterproductive toothpastes.

2. Don’t clean your teeth with activated charcoal.

While charcoal can indeed be used to absorb toxins, including in some types of poisoning, it doesn’t zero in on only harmful chemicals. Its highly porous texture means that it absorbs everything, both good and bad! It’s also very abrasive, and there is no evidence that it helps teeth more than it harms them.

3. Oil pulling probably won’t hurt, but it won’t help either.

One of the stranger trends we’ve seen is oil pulling, or swishing a small amount of oil in your mouth for twenty minute stretches in hopes of achieving whitening effects. Unlike the other items on this list, it won’t do any harm to your teeth, but it’s a lot of time to spend on something that has no proven benefits.

For Trustworthy Advice, Start With Us!

The main takeaway here is that no matter what seems cool or effective in the moment, it’s always better to consult with actual dental health professionals before making big changes to your dental hygiene routine or the appearance of your teeth. If you’ve been hearing a lot about some new fad, run it by the dentist the next time you come in for a cleaning!

Let the pros help you choose science over the fads!

Top image used under CC0 Public Domain license. Image cropped and modified from original.

The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

Which Toothbrush 2020 543

CENTURIES AGO, PEOPLE didn’t have many options for how to keep their teeth clean. Some cultures used chewing sticks and early toothbrushes had bristles made of horse hair. These days, we have a wide range of options for what tools to use for cleaning our teeth. How are you to find the one that’s best for you? We’d like to offer a few tips to narrow things down.

How Stiff Are Those Bristles?

When we’re doing chores around the house, it can often take some elbow grease to do a good job of cleaning various surfaces, but leave that idea behind when it comes to brushing your teeth. Brushing too hard can do serious damage to the gum tissue. It’s actually a major cause of gum recession! The firmness of the toothbrush bristles plays a role in that too. That’s why we recommend avoiding firm-bristled toothbrushes in favor of ones with soft bristles.

Stick With Manual or Spring for Electric?

Early electric toothbrushes didn’t do a much better job than manual ones at cleaning teeth, but modern electric toothbrushes have lived up to the original idea and often outshine their non-electric counterparts, cleaning out more plaque from hard-to-reach places. Good electric toothbrushes can eliminate up to 21% more plaque than a manual toothbrush and even reduce the risk of gingivitis by 11%! They also make it easier to last the two full minutes and brush gently.

Okay, but What Kind of Electric Toothbrush?

f an electric toothbrush sounds like something worth trying, there are still a lot to choose from. The two main varieties are oscillating and sonic brushes. Oscillating brushes spin rapidly, while sonic brushes vibrate side to side. They both work great! The most effective ones tend to be on the pricey side, but if you’d like our recommendation, just ask the next time you come see us!

Make Sure to Take Good Care Of It!

Once you have your ideal toothbrush, it’s also important to store it properly and replace it (or the head, if it’s electric) regularly. We would discourage using toothbrush cases except when you need them for traveling, because the best way to store a toothbrush is upright where it can dry out between uses. If it stays damp, it becomes a breeding ground for germs! Then make sure to replace it every few months, especially if the bristles become frayed or bent!

It’s Not Just About the Tool, but How you Use It

Having the best toothbrush for you is one part of the equation, and taking good care of it is another, but the most important thing is to maintain a good routine by brushing twice a day for two full minutes. Even the fanciest toothbrush can only prevent tooth decay effectively when it’s being put to good use. If you have any questions about which toothbrush to choose, just let us know!

The last part of the equation is having a good dentist!

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The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

Dental Emergency 2020 543

A LITTLE BIT OF PREP work makes a huge difference when an emergency happens, including a dental emergency such as an oral injury. What exactly can we do to prepare for something like an unexpected injury? It depends on the specific situation.

Broken Tooth

If an injury results in a broken, chipped, or cracked tooth, the best thing to do is head straight to the dentist. If you can find the broken pieces, bring them along in a glass of cold milk to protect them. It’s also okay to rinse your mouth with water.

Even if a crack or chip seems minor, don’t ignore it! If the damage reaches the pulp chamber, it puts the tooth in serious danger of infection. Even if it doesn’t, it can work like a cavity and give bacteria a space to grow until it does reach the pulp chamber. That’s how dental infections start, leading to pulp death, painful abscesses, loss of bone tissue in the jaw, and even the risk of the infection spreading to the bloodstream.

Knocked Out Adult Tooth

If the whole tooth gets knocked out in one piece, this, too, is a situation that requires immediate attention from the dentist. There is a limited window (not much longer than an hour) in which a knocked out tooth can be successfully replanted, so the faster you get to the dentist, the better its chances are. To give it its best shot, put it back in the socket on the way there and hold it in place with a washcloth or gauze. If that isn’t possible, store it in cold milk.

Here are a few important don’ts for knocked out teeth:

  • DON’T touch the root.
  • DON’T let it dry out.
  • DON’T scrub or clean it with soap, alcohol, or peroxide.

Any of these could kill the root, making the tooth impossible to replant.

Knocked Out Baby Tooth

Most of the time, when a baby tooth gets knocked out, it isn’t an emergency. Typically we wouldn’t replant a baby tooth because that might create problems for the permanent tooth underneath. However, if it wasn’t loose beforehand, we recommend at least giving the dentist a call for some advice. There might be less obvious damage than what happened to the tooth.

We’re Prepared for Patient Emergencies Too!

Another essential part of your dental emergency plan, besides what to do in different emergency situations, is to know where to go for help! If you’d like to learn what our practice can do for dental emergencies, just give us a call and we can tell you about our end of the equation. Hopefully you’ll never need to make use of this information and the only times we’ll see you will be for normal appointments, but preparation is key!

Thank you for putting your trust in our practice!

Top image used under CC0 Public Domain license. Image cropped and modified from original.

The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

Medication And Teeth 543

WE ALL KNOW that medications can have side effects. If you tried, you could probably hear the voice in pharmaceutical commercials rattling off some of the most common ones in your head. We bring it up because those side effects often include oral health problems.

Medicine and the Chemistry of the Mouth

Some of the medications and even vitamins we take can be directly harmful to teeth. This is more of a problem for children, since adult medicine mostly comes in the form of pills to be swallowed. Medicine for children, on the other hand, often takes the form of sugary syrups and multivitamins. That sugar feeds oral bacteria and can contribute to tooth decay.

Adults and children alike may experience oral side effects from inhalers — particularly oral thrush, or white patches of fungus on the tongue, the roof of the mouth, and inside the cheeks, which can be irritating or painful. A key preventative measure for patients who use inhalers is to rinse with water after using the inhaler (also a good idea after taking cough syrup or multivitamins).

The Indirect Impact of Medicine on Oral Health

Even if a medication makes it past the mouth without causing direct harm, those side effects can still kick in later. For example, blood thinners can make the gums more prone to bleeding while brushing. A number of medications can cause inflammation in gum tissue, increasing the risk of gum disease.

While this may not be an actual health concern, several medications can affect our sense of taste, causing a weird bitter or metallic taste or other changes. There have been rare instances of drugs for osteoporosis compromising the bone tissue in the jaw, which increases the risk of gum recession and tooth loss.

Dry mouth is the most common oral side effect of prescribed and over-the-counter medications alike. Dry mouth, in addition to making chewing and swallowing difficult and reducing the ability to taste, leaves the teeth and gums vulnerable. Saliva is the first line of defense against oral bacteria, and without it, it’s much harder to defend against gum disease and tooth decay.

Keep the Dentist in the Loop

Make sure you know about the side effects of any medications you may be taking, and make sure your dentist knows too! It may be possible to adjust a prescription to minimize the negatives, but that can only happen if all health care professionals involved are properly informed of your situation.

Dentists are a wonderful resource, so make sure to use them!

Top image used under CC0 Public Domain license. Image cropped and modified from original.

The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

John Greenwood 543

AN ESTIMATED 23 MILLION Americans have none of their teeth left, and another 12 million are missing all the teeth of one arch. As dental health professionals, we do our part to help those numbers go down, but that’s still quite a few people who need replacement teeth. There’s a long and fascinating history that got false teeth to where they are today.

Ancient False Teeth

False teeth have been a solution for tooth loss since at least 2500 B.C. The oldest examples we know of were discovered in Mexico and made of wolf teeth. Nearly two thousand years later, the ancient Etruscans were using gold wire or bands to attach human or animal teeth to a person’s remaining teeth, and the tomb of El Gigel in Egypt contained two false teeth made of bone and wrapped in gold wire.

The Last Few Centuries of Dentures

Bringing things into the modern age, the Japanese began using wood as a material for false teeth in the 1500s, but carved ivory became a popular material by the 1700s. Ivory turners, goldsmiths, and barber-surgeons would craft dentures out of ivory, human teeth, and animal teeth.

Guess Who Didn’t Have Wooden Dentures?

Even though wood was used as a denture material in some places, George Washington’s mouth was not one of them. Thanks to a combination of a poorly balanced diet and (likely) genetics, Washington suffered a lifetime of dental problems, losing a tooth a year starting in his twenties. By the time he was inaugurated, he only had one tooth left!

Washington’s dentist, Dr. John Greenwood, made several sets of dentures for the first president, and they were pretty advanced for the time. He made them out of hippo ivory, gold springs, and brass screws attached to human teeth. As good as Greenwood was at his job, Washington still experienced a lot of pain with them and was very insecure about the way they made his face look.

A cool detail about Dr. Greenwood is that, where most of his contemporaries probably would’ve pulled Washington’s remaining tooth, he carefully crafted the dentures to accommodate it, for he believed that a dentist should “never extract a tooth…[when] there is a possibility of saving it.” Greenwood would be in good company today!

False Teeth Today

Here in the 21st century, patients have far better options than George Washington did. Modern dentures are usually made of acrylic resin or plastic, and sometimes porcelain. They are available as partial dentures or full sets, and they can be removable or anchored in place by implants. Implants can also serve as anchors for orthodontic treatment.

Patients can even have each missing tooth replaced by an individual implant, though this is a very expensive option. Better yet, more and more teeth can be saved through root canal treatment, meaning that a replacement tooth isn’t needed at all!

Good Strategies for Keeping Our Teeth

As far as false teeth have come over the course of history, we’d all prefer to keep our teeth and keep them healthy. Going to our regular dental appointments, avoiding sugary foods and drinks, and maintaining good daily dental hygiene routines are all essential components of keeping our teeth healthy and strong for life!

We love our patients’ healthy smiles!

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The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

Nail Biting 2020 543

TOOTH ENAMEL RANKS between steel and titanium on the Mohs Hardness Scale. That makes it harder than any other substance in the human body, and it also makes it harder than iron! However, it’s still fairly brittle and very vulnerable to acid erosion, and there are plenty of daily habits we might have that can put it at risk.

This One’s a Nail-Biter (But You Shouldn’t Be)

If you ask most people what the harms of a nail-biting habit are, they’ll probably start with ragged, damaged fingernails, but the effects on teeth and overall oral health can be just as serious, if not more so. Tooth enamel might be harder than keratin (what fingernails are made of), which means enamel is going to win the battle, but over time, keratin will win the war.

Habitual nail-biting can erode, crack, and chip teeth. It can shift them out of proper alignment, resulting in gaps and bad bites. It could even lead to root resorption, or the breakdown of the roots of the teeth! The risk of resorption is also higher in someone with braces. At the same time, the fingernails are the dirtiest part of the hands, and all the dirt and germs under there transfers to the mouth in a nail-biting session. This can lead to gum disease.

Avoid Mouth Breathing Whenever Possible

Thanks to the popular show Stranger Things, “Mouth-Breather” has become a more popular insult in recent years, but there are a lot of good reasons to avoid habitually breathing through your mouth instead of your nose. Mouth breathing can cause a variety of problems, both in the short term and over time:

Lower oxygen levels: nose breathing triggers the production of nitric oxide, a molecule that helps our lungs absorb oxygen. Mouth breathing skips that step, so we can’t get as much out of each breath! That results in less energy for mental and physical tasks.

Dry mouth: the constant airflow in the mouth dries it out, which is a big problem, because saliva is the first line of defense against oral bacteria. Dry mouth leads to chronic bad breath and tooth decay.

Sleep apnea: with habitual mouth breathing comes the increased likelihood of sleep apnea, which makes it difficult to get restful sleep and over time increases the risk of chronic diseases like diabetes and high blood pressure.

Altered bone growth: when the mouth is closed, the tongue provides the right pressure for a child’s dental arches and facial bones to develop well. Mouth breathing removes the support structure and leads to narrow arches, flat features, drooping eyes, and a small chin.

Worse orthodontic problems: narrow dental arches are very likely to feature a lot of crowding. In order to make room for the full set of teeth, orthodontic treatment will usually be necessary.

Let’s Break Those Habits!

Whether you’re personally struggling with nail biting, mouth breathing, or both, or you’ve noticed that your child does, we can help! Just give us a call. We want you to have all the information you need about the ways these habits impact oral health, and we want you to have all the tools you need to fight back!

We love our patients!

Top image used under CC0 Public Domain license. Image cropped and modified from original.

The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

Guide To Choosing Dentist 543

PEOPLE MIGHT NEED to find a new dentist for all sorts of reasons. Maybe they moved to a new city. Maybe their old dentist retired. Maybe they’re new parents and need to find a dentist for their child. Whatever the reason is, we recommend not waiting until an urgent dental health emergency pops up before finding a dentist that fits your needs. Here are five important factors to keep in mind when searching for the best dentist for you.

1. Location, Location, Location!

How close is the practice to your home? To your child’s school or where they play sports? To your workplace? Make sure the distance isn’t so great that making it to twice-yearly checkups will become a major inconvenience. It’s a good idea to decide on a radius that seems doable for you and your family, then determine who the best dentist is within that radius. On the other hand, there might be a dentist slightly farther away who is still worth it for other reasons!

2. Reputation Matters

What kind of reviews does the dentist have? What are their other patients saying about them? Check out the Yelp and Google reviews and maybe ask around your neighborhood, coworkers, and friend group to see if anyone you know is familiar with that particular dentist. While there can sometimes be hidden gems, a lot of good feedback is generally a positive sign.

3. What Specialties Can They Claim?

A dental practice that operates close to you and has fantastic reviews might still not be right for you if they don’t offer some of the services you think you’re likely to need. How good are they with child patients? Do they offer cosmetic treatments? How much experience do they have with root canal therapy or treating gum disease? Do some research into a dentist’s specialties to see if they’re a good fit.

4. How Well Do They Fit Your Budget?

Sometimes a dentist’s only flaw is the cost of their services in comparison to your budget, or that they aren’t in your dental insurance network. It’s still important to find a dentist for regular appointments in this case, because those checkups are much easier on a budget than a serious dental problem that could’ve been caught and treated cheaply in an early stage. Finding a budget-friendly dentist is an excellent investment, both financially and in terms of dental health.

5. Patient Comfort

If you aren’t comfortable around a dentist or within their practice, then the other factors might not matter much to you. It’s a good idea to pay a practice you’re considering an early visit just to get a sense of the place and the staff. A good dentist will always prioritize patient comfort, especially considering how many patients struggle with dental anxiety!

Meanwhile, keep up those oral hygiene habits!

We Look Forward to Meeting You!

If you weren’t sure how to start looking for a great dentist before, we hope we’ve given you a few ideas of where to begin! If you want to learn more about our practice, just give us a call or stop buy. We’re happy to answer any questions you may have!

Thank you for trusting us with your dental health needs!

Top image used under CC0 Public Domain license. Image cropped and modified from original.

The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

Best Toothbrush Use 543

AN IMPORTANT PART of keeping your teeth and gums healthy is your toothbrush. That might seem so obvious that it’s not worth saying, but you’d be surprised how many basic mistakes people make when it comes to their toothbrushes. We want to make sure our patients will get the most out of their best teeth-cleaning tools!

1. Replace Your Toothbrush Regularly

Look at your toothbrush. Are the bristles frayed or bent? Are some missing? You might be well overdue for a replacement toothbrush. The American Dental Association recommends that we replace our toothbrushes at least three times a year, because old, worn-out bristles can’t do a very effective job of cleaning teeth.

2. Take Your Time When You Brush

As often as dentists everywhere remind patients to brush for two full minutes, the average is only about 45 seconds. This simply isn’t long enough to get the full cleaning effect. The repeated motions are what clear plaque and food particles away, and we shouldn’t be skimping on that. We encourage our patients to help move that average closer to the recommended two minutes! Playing a song or setting a timer are great ways to keep track of the time.

3. What Specialties Can They Claim?

When we’re cleaning grout out of the tiles in the kitchen, it often requires a little elbow grease. We understand how some people might get the idea that it’s the same with teeth and gums, but that’s simply not true. Brushing hard or using a firm-bristled brush can actually result in gum recession over time. We recommend soft bristles and a gentle hand. Brushing harder does not mean brushing better!

4. Wait 30 Minutes After Eating Before Brushing

One of the most common mistakes people make with brushing is to do so immediately after a meal. This isn’t a great idea, because the acids in our food and drink temporarily weaken our tooth enamel. If we brush then, we can accidentally cause enamel erosion. That’s why waiting at least half an hour to brush is a good idea; it gives our saliva enough time to neutralize the acid and begin the remineralization process.

5. Store Your Toothbrush Properly

If your toothbrush carries a funky smell, it could be because you aren’t giving it a chance to fully dry between uses. To keep a toothbrush fresh and devoid of moisture-loving bacteria, we should always store our toothbrushes upright and give them enough air flow to dry out. No more toothbrush covers! (And also keep them as far from the toilet as possible.)

6. How’s Your Brushing Technique?

Even brushing twice a day for the full two minutes with a soft-bristled brush that you store correctly won’t be able to fully offset poor brushing technique. Keep in mind that the goal is to get plaque and food particles out of the gumline. Hold the brush at a 45° angle to your gums and gently sweep it in circular motions. Get each area of the mouth at least fifteen times, both on the outside and the tongue side, as well as the chewing surfaces.

Bring Us All Your Toothbrush Questions!

If you’d like any more tips about how to get the most out of your toothbrush, whether you’re looking for technique pointers or recommendations on the best toothbrush for you, we’re happy to help. And don’t forget to floss each day too!

Make sure you’re also keeping up with your regular appointments!

Top image used under CC0 Public Domain license. Image cropped and modified from original.

The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

Halitosis1 543

FEW THINGS ARE WORSE at a first date or a job interview than the sudden awareness that bad breath might have ruined your first impression. No matter what else goes right, if the date or potential employer has a nose full of funky smells, it probably isn’t going to end well. So how can we stop bad breath from ruining those big moments? What causes bad breath anyway?

The Simple Answer: Oral Hygiene

The most common cause of bad breath is the chemical breakdown of leftover food particles stuck between our teeth. Oral bacteria eat these particles and then excrete very smelly compounds like hydrogen sulfide (which smells like rotten eggs), turning our breath sour. Fortunately, the solution is also simple: brush twice a day, floss daily, use a tongue-scraper to get extra bacteria off your tongue, and chew sugar-free gum after lunch if necessary.

Sometimes Halitosis Is More Complicated

Unfortunately, not everyone who struggles with bad breath can solve it with a good daily oral hygiene routine alone. Plenty of other things can cause halitosis.

  • Mouth-breathing dries out the mouth, which means there isn’t enough saliva to wash away food particles and neutralize acids, so it’s much easier to get smelly.
  • Medications commonly cause dry mouth as a side effect, which leads to the same problems as with mouth-breathing.
  • Chronic health conditions (even ones without an obvious connection to breath freshness), such as acid reflux, liver or kidney disease, and diabetes.
  • Having a cold or sinus infection can mean a lot of smelly mucous that affects the way breath smells.
  • Pregnancy symptoms like morning sickness and nausea can affect breath because they increase the amount of acid in the mouth. People struggling with bulimia may have a similar problem.
  • Using tobacco products in any form will leave foul-smelling compounds in the mouth as well as drying it out. It also raises the risk of developing gum disease or oral cancer.
  • Untreated tooth decay or gum disease tends to go hand-in-hand with halitosis. That’s because the same bacteria that causes bad breath also causes cavities and periodontitis!

Managing and Combating Halitosis

When brushing, flossing, and tongue scraping aren’t enough to keep your breath minty fresh, it’s critical to discover the underlying cause so that you can address it directly instead of only attacking a symptom. We encourage habitual mouth-breathers to try breathing through their noses more. We encourage anyone who smokes or chews tobacco to quit. If the problem is related to dry mouth, sugar-free gum helps to stimulate saliva production, and sipping water and using a humidifier can also help keep the moisture up.

Call in the Professionals!

If you have any concerns about stubborn bad breath, the dentist is a great ally to turn to. The dentist can help you discover what’s causing the bad breath and recommend the best solutions, so make sure to bring all of your questions to your next dental exam!

Thank you for being part of our practice family!

Top image used under CC0 Public Domain license. Image cropped and modified from original.

The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.