What is Halitosis?

Bad breath, also known as halitosis, can be embarrassing for many patients. However, it is a treatable oral health condition. Sometimes, bad breath can be a result of medical or oral health problems. Dr. Jim Furgurson and his team at Chapel Hill provide routine dental appointments with preventative dentistry against halitosis and other dental problems in Chapel Hill, NC. For fresher breath and a healthier smile, contact Dr. Furgurson’s dental office. With his dental team, Dr. Furgurson helps patients receive the general dental care that they need.

Preventative Dentistry in Chapel Hill, North Carolina

Types and Causes of Bad Breath

Bad breath is categorized as either chronic or transitory. Transitory bad breath may last only one to three days and is often caused by garlic, onions, and other foods. Sometimes, chronic bad breath is caused by an underlying medical condition. For example, patients with diabetes or sinusitis may be more at risk of developing bad breath.

Diabetes raises glucose levels in the mouth which, in turn, promote bacterial growth. Increased bacteria in the mouth can cause halitosis. Sinusitis is a sinus infection that can also cause halitosis. This is because the sinus drains at the back of the throat.  Additionally, chronic halitosis may be a sign of tooth decay or even gum disease. Volatile sulfur compounds or VSCs cause bad breath due to bacteria that cause tooth and gum infections.

How to Prevent Bad Breath

Many patients may not even realize that they have halitosis. However, one of the best ways to combat bad breath is to practice good oral hygiene. Remember to brush your tongue to prevent bacteria buildup, as this part of the mouth is often overlooked.  Tobacco products like cigarettes can also contribute to halitosis. They can cause hyposalivation, or reduce the production of saliva. The chemicals in tobacco products also mix with saliva to create bad odors.

Remember to drink enough water every day to help wash away bacteria. Keeping yourself hydrated also prevents dry mouth, a condition that can also cause bad breath. If you have a medical condition that causes bad breath, talk to your doctor to find the best solution for your halitosis. Regular dental care and oral hygiene are often effective for many patients. However, symptoms for medical conditions will often have solutions other than oral health care.

Schedule a Dental Consultation

Do you want to know more about how to treat chronic halitosis or bad breath? Request a dental appointment with our team on our website. You may also call Dr. Furgurson at 919.736.6175 if you are a new patient. Current patients can call 919.251.9313. If you have questions about your current symptoms, please let Dr. Furgurson or a member of his team know and they will be happy to help.