Everyone has bad breath, but here is how to avoid it. (iStock)
Dear Dr. Manny:
Why do I have bad breath all the time? I brush my teeth and I don't take my smell away. How do I solve it?
Thanks for your question
Everyone has bad breath, either in the morning or after a meal with garlic. It is normal. But if it doesn't go away, it can be chronic. Chronic halitosis could be an indication of something more serious.
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Bad breath can mean that you have a serious respiratory infection, either in the breast or throat. You will know if you have trouble breathing, accumulation of mucus and fever.
Diabetes could be another cause. Doctors linked an acid odor to something called ketoacidosis, where the body excretes ketones with an unpleasant smell. This is caused by lack of insulin and can cause death.
If you are overweight, you may also have bad breath. Diets high in dairy and protein can lead to an excess of amino acids, which can lead to the growth of bacteria.
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Dry mouth can also cause bad breath. One of the causes of dry mouth is the habit of excessive drinking. Alcohol dehydrates you and makes your mouth susceptible to bacteria. Sleep apnea, or snoring, is another cause. This prevents the production of saliva.
Acid reflux and GERD can cause food to begin to break down in the intestine, which causes a bad smell.
Stomach ulcers are caused by the same bacteria that causes chronic halitosis.
A fishy smell in the breath can come from a kidney or kidney disease. If the kidneys do not properly eliminate toxins from your body, the smell could enter your breath.
Lung cancer could also be the cause. In fact, doctors rely on bad breath to help them diagnose lung cancer. Breath samples can also diagnose heart conditions.
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In addition to brushing and flossing more frequently, consider changing your diet to help fight bad breath. Scrape your tongue, use mouthwash, keep your gums healthy. Do not eat sweets to stop bad breath, but chew gum. Leave your bad habits. Stop smoking. It may not produce enough saliva, so be sure to keep your mouth moist to encourage better saliva production.