Your Guide to Preventing and Treating Bad Breath

Have you ever been worried that your breath might smell to others? Maybe you’ve been around someone with terrible breath, which made you uncomfortable and want to avoid them altogether.

Bad breath, also known as halitosis, is a common dental problem affecting millions worldwide. It can be embarrassing, frustrating, and even socially isolating, as it can make you avoid close interactions with others.

If you are struggling with this, you are not alone. We’re here to help you understand the causes and how to overcome foul breath and regain your confidence.

The signs of bad breath

Unless someone directly points it out, you might not always be aware that you have foul-smelling breath. However, there are signs that point to it, depending on the cause and severity.

  • Dry mouth
  • A foul taste in your mouth
  • White or yellow coating on your tongue
  • Gum inflammation or bleeding
  • Post-nasal drip

Common causes of bad breath

Foul breath is caused by various factors, such as:

Poor oral hygiene

If you do not brush, floss, or rinse your mouth regularly, bacteria can accumulate in your mouth and cause an odour.


Certain foods such as onions, garlic and spicy foods can cause terrible breath, as well as drinks like coffee and alcohol.


Using tobacco products can cause your breath to smell, stain your teeth, and increase your risk of oral health issues such as gum disease.

Medical conditions

Bad breath can be a symptom of some medical conditions, such as sinus infections, diabetes, and liver or kidney disease.

Overcoming bad breath

No one enjoys being smelly, but the good news is that it’s treatable and preventable. Here are just a few ways to clear it up:

Improve your oral hygiene: Brush and floss your teeth twice daily, and use mouthwash to remove bacteria and food particles.

Stay hydrated: Drink enough water to keep your mouth moist and wash away bacteria and debris.

Avoid tobacco products: Quit smoking and using tobacco products to improve your oral and overall health and eliminate nasty breath.

Watch your diet: Limit your intake of foods and drinks that cause an odour, such as onions, garlic, coffee and alcohol. Choose fresh fruits and vegetables, lean proteins and whole grains instead.

Visit your dentist regularly: Routine dental check-ups and cleanings can help prevent and treat foul-smelling breath, as dentists can identify any underlying oral health issues and provide professional cleanings and treatment.

Use speciality products: Certain products like tongue scrapers, breath mints, and sugar-free gum can help freshen your breath and reduce bacteria in your mouth.

If all else fails, we at Smith & Van Lierop Dentistry are happy to assist you. Visit our practice for high-quality care and effective treatments.