What’s the real story on fixing bad breath?


What’s the real story on fixing bad breath?

Do you (or someone you know) have bad breath? It’s a sensitive and embarrassing issue that causes problems at work, in social situations, and at home. Except for certain medical conditions, chronic bad breath is almost always a dental problem that can be solved.

Bad breath comes from bacterial plaque that accumulates between the teeth, under the gums and on the back of the tongue. So what can you do at home to cure bad breath? And how can a dentist help?

First of all, make sure you are doing everything you can to keep gum disease under control. At home, that means brushing after every meal, flossing at least once a day, using a Water Pik, using a tongue scraper, and rinsing with a chlorine dioxide mouthwash such as Closys or Therabreath (available in many drugstores and online). At the dentist, that means following the dentist’s and the hygienist’s recommendations on deep cleanings, and regular cleanings.

Second, ask Dr. Bernstein to make sure that your dental fillings and crowns fit well. If a dental restoration doesn’t fit tightly against the tooth or if there is a space between teeth, you will collect bacterial plaque. Dr. Bernstein can upgrade your dental restorations so they are smooth, fit well, and fit tightly against the neighboring tooth.

Lastly, we all know certain foods like onions and garlic cause bad breath—and so do alcohol and tobacco. But did you know that coffee and dairy do, too? People who consume a lot of coffee and dairy tend to accumulate more plaque on the back of the tongue, which needs to be scraped off with a tongue scraper.

If you have any questions about bad breath, please ask us.