Causes and Cures for Bad Breath

Bad breath is one of those problems that is downright embarrassing. We try to mask it with mint, gum, or social distancing–but with raised awareness of the causes and a few simple remedies, you can banish bad breath from your mouth.


There are a number of possible causes for bad breath. Possibilities include:

  • Stress
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Dieting
  • Dehydration
  • A serious medical condition (diabetes, reflux, ulcers, respiratory disorder, kidney or liver malfunction)
  • Certain foods (garlic, onions, strong spices, etc.)
  • Imbalance of good and bad bacteria
  • Intestinal parasites
  • Dental problems (especially periodontal problems and tooth abscesses)



The first step in getting rid of bad breath is identifying the culprit. Visit your dentist and get a thorough check-up to see if there are any periodontal issues causing the foul odor. Get your teeth cleaned to remove plaque that can attract foul-smelling bacteria in your mouth. Get any cavities filled, as these can also breed “stinky” bacteria.

In addition to seeing your dental health professional, some at-home fixes include:

  • Swishing with water after eating
  • Frequent brushing and flossing–and don’t forget to brush your tongue!
  • Eliminate certain foods, such as foods with high acidity, fish, garlic, onions, coffee, or tea
  • Eat more fruits and veggies containing digestive enzymes
  • Increase your vitamin C, B, and zinc intake through diet or supplements


Email as at [email protected] or comment with any questions on this common problem.

About the author

A practicing dentist since 1982, Dr. Gary Imm, provides advanced cosmetic dentistry, including smile makeovers, sedation, implant and TMJ services. He is committed to progressive, extraordinary care for his guests. All Smiles Dental Care trains at least 300 hours each year at such prestigious centers as the Las Vegas Institute of Advanced Dentistry. (LVI)

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