Bad breath (also knows as halitosis) affects almost everyone at some point in their lives. It is the unpleasant odour that comes from the mouth and has a variety of causes. Although bad breath can be sometimes embarrassing, there’s no need to worry as there are many ways to remedy the symptoms.

The most common cause of bad breath is a build-up of bacteria in the mouth. This build-up is fuelled most commonly by the foods that we eat. Food particles that remain in the mouth after eating can collect bacteria on the teeth, gums and tongue. Other causes of bad breath include smoking, dieting, hormonal changes, certain diseases and some medications. These all cause bad breath in different ways but most share the theme of bacteria build-up.

The easiest way to remedy bad breath is with proper oral care. The simplest place to start is at home with your oral care routine. Starting by flossing can help remove the build up of food that can get stuck between the teeth which is an ideal breeding ground for bacteria. After that, brushing of the teeth and gums can whisk this bacteria away leaving the mouth clean and healthy. Lastly, don’t forget to brush your tongue with a tongue scraper or your toothbrush. A lot of bacteria can build up on the surface of the tongue which can then lead to bad breath.

A proper dental cleaning and checkup can go a long way in removing and keeping bacteria build-up at bay. If bad breath becomes chronic, your dentist can also help to determine the root cause.