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How common is bad breath (halitosis)?

Bad breath (halitosis) is very common and is an unpleasant condition that can be cause for embarrassment. If you don't brush and floss daily, particles of food remain in the mouth, collecting bacteria, which can cause bad breath. Food that collects between the teeth, on the tongue and around the gums can rot, leaving an unpleasant odor. Some people with bad breath aren’t even aware there’s a problem. If you’re concerned about bad breath, see your dentist. He or she can help identify the cause and, if it’s due to an oral condition, develop a treatment plan to help eliminate it.
Bad breath (halitosis) is a common malady for most people. Often caused by pungent or spicy foods or coffee, bad breath is easily remedied by brushing your teeth at least twice daily, flossing once a day, and using an antiseptic mouthwash, if needed. Sucking sugar-free breath mints can help alleviate bad breath as can chewing minty sugar-free gum.

Sometimes bad breath is caused by a more serious problem such as an abscessed tooth, poorly fitting dentures, cavities, gum disease (gingivitis), tonsillitis, tonsilloliths (tonsil stones or hardened mucus deposits on tonsils), sinus infection, and other conditions. Treating the condition often clears up the bad breath.

Halitosis, more commonly known as bad breath, is one of the most common concerns that patients discuss with their dentist. It is estimated that 65 percent of the population suffers from chronic bad breath - a serious problem considering that it affects social, professional and personal relationships.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.