Get fresh!

7th September 2016 by John Picton

Bad breath (medically known as halitosis) may be a common problem but it’s still something of a taboo subject, even in an age when people just can’t stop sharing their secrets. It’s a social no-no and famously considered to be an affliction that even your best pal won’t tell you about. It can cause real problems if you fancy getting up close and personal, for whatever reason, and may also encourage people to keep their distance.

There are a number of causes of bad breath but the chief one is odorous compounds created by pesky bacteria that have set up camp in your mouth.

Other possible causes include:

  • Smoking – obviously this is bad news all round but it can also dry out the mouth leading to yucky breath.
  • Diet – low carb diets, an intolerance to dairy products, eating lots of acidic foods and overindulging in booze or coffee can all be bad breath boosters.
  • Age – older people or, at the other end of the scale, young children tend to be more prone to breath problems.
  • Medication – certain tablets can cause a dry mouth, leading to an unpleasant aroma.
  • Dental decay – cavities can harbour bacteria that produce nasty niffs.

It can be difficult to know if you have bad breath but there are a couple of ways you can carry out a little DIY detection. If you lick your wrist, leave it to dry for 30 seconds and then give it a sniff, it may alert you to whiffy breath. Or passing floss through the upper and lower back teeth and then smelling it may give you a clue.

If you do think you have a problem or someone has been brave enough to tell you about it, our Fresh Breath Clinic will come to your rescue. When you see us with your breath concerns, we will review your medical history, have a look for signs of dental decay, check for problems with any fillings and if necessary arrange for x-rays to be taken.

We also use a snazzy bit of kit called the Halimeter, which detects those naughty sulphur compounds in your breath. If necessary, we carry out plaque scores, and bleeding and pocket charts. In addition, we will give you plenty of advice on how to boost your oral hygiene techniques and provide you with one of our helpful fresh breath kits.

So we get true idea of your breath situation we ask you to not to do any of the following before you see us:

  • Brush, floss or use mouthwash (for 12 hours before) – we want to see you as ‘au naturale’ as possible.
  • Eat or drink – except water (for 5 hours before).
  • Use tobacco or indulge in alcohol (for 12 hours before) – you may have to put off that wild night out.
  • Eat onions, garlic or cabbage (for 48 hours before) – so lay off the curry.
  • Take antibiotics (for 3 weeks before).

And finally, don’t wear any scent or aftershave to the appointment – it’s better if bad smells aren’t masked so we know what we’re dealing with.

If you do have an issue, the top treatment for bothersome breath is usually effective dental hygiene and we know all the right techniques for keeping your mouth in prime condition.

So if you want to breathe freely, with renewed confidence, visit our Fresh Breath Clinic and banish those bothersome pongs.