Halitosis is the scientific term for bad breath. It simply means that the breath is unpleasant, and this unpleasant, acrid breath is due to bacterial processes in the mouth. As the bacteria digest residual nutrients or food detritus, they produce uric acid, and a bunch of other smelly by products, as this process is essentially what decay is. Find out more about halitosis and what can be done against it in this informative article.
Certain areas are better at retaining bacterial life, and are thus more likely to cause bad breath then others. These areas include the tongue and the gaps between teeth, classic places where food detritus is likely to get stuck and start to attract bacterial life, but may also be the palate and the lingual side of the teeth. Any parts of the mouth that you neglect to get to because it is hard to reach, like the side of molars and behind the wisdom teeth are also likely to start to accumulate plaque, which is essentially a bacterial habitat, and this plaque smells unpleasant, and so will your breath.
What to do
This does not mean that you should resign yourself to having bad breath and that is all. There are several things you can do, and the first is to be more circumspect in your at home cleaning routine. Use dental floss, or an interdental toothbrush to get in between teeth and clean the gaps thoroughly. Use a tongue scrubber, or your toothbrush to gently clean your tongue and remove bacterial residue from it, and do not forget to do this every time you brush your teeth. Using mouthwash is also very important, as this liquid can get into places that your toothbrush simply cannot reach. It is also important to go and get a professional cleaning every six months or so, as all problems that are likely to develop in the future can be spotted and fixed before they cause serious trouble, and all bacterial life will be removed from all the hard to reach places as well as places that simply cannot be reached, like beneath the gum line or the lingual side of molars.
But bad breath can have causes that are not just in the mouth. An unpleasant breath can be a sign of acid reflux disease, Crohn’s disease and a number of other digestive and intestinal problems, and can seriously affect your health. Bad breath in the morning may be a first sign, do if your dentist does not see any dental causes, or if you have bad breath even when your teeth have been cleaned professionally, it is worth getting it looked into by a professional.