Bad Breath (Halitosis)

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Bad Breath (Halitosis) Definition Symptoms Cause Diet Homeopathic Medicine Treatment Homeopathy Doctor Clinic in Rajkot Gujarat India

The Bad Breath (Halitosis):

Definition

Bad Breath (Halitosis) Is an unpleasant odor of the breath, the state or condition of having bad breath.[1]

Overview of Bad Breath (Halitosis)

  • In about 90% of genuine halitosis cases, the origin of the odours is in the mouth itself. This is known as intra-oral halitosis, oral malodour or oral halitosis. Bad breath may be transient, often disappearing following eating, drinking, tooth brushing, flossing, or rinsing with specialized mouth wash. Bad breath may also be persistent (chronic bad breath), which affects some 25% of the population in varying degrees.
  • Tongue bacteria produce malodourous compounds and fatty acids, and account for 80 to 90% of all cases of mouth-related bad breath.
  • In detail, Some claim that the tonsils are the most significant cause of halitosis after the mouth. According to one report, approximately 3% of halitosis cases were related to the tonsils.
  • Bad breath may severely affect the lives of some 0.5–1.0% of the adult population.

Causes of Bad Breath (Halitosis)

Mouth

  • The most common causes are due to poor oral hygiene.
  • In order of descending prevalence, inter-dental also sub-gingival niches, faulty dental work, food-impaction areas in between the teeth, abscesses, and unclean dentures Oral based lesions caused by viral infections like herpes simplex and HPV may also contribute to bad breath.
  • Due to eating certain foods such as garlic, onions, meat, fish, cheese, smoking, and alcohol consumption.
  • Since the mouth is exposed to less oxygen and is inactive especially, during the night, the odour is usually worse upon awakening.

Tongue

  • Dry also poorly cleansed posterior dorsum of tongue.
  • The presence of halitosis-producing bacteria on the back of the tongue is not to be confused with tongue coating. Additionally, Bacteria are invisible to the naked eye, and degrees of white tongue coating are present in most people with and without halitosis.
  • A visible white tongue coating does not always equal the back of the tongue as an origin of halitosis; however, a “white tongue” is thought to be a sign of halitosis. In oral medicine generally, a white tongue is considered a sign of several medical conditions.
  • Lastly, Halitosis patients were also shown to have significantly higher bacterial loads in this region compared to individuals without halitosis.[1]

Gums

  • Periodontal disease is a common cause of severe halitosis
  • Multiple gingival and periodontal abscess
  • Subgingival calculus
  • Gingivitis and periodontal disease (in other words, periodontopathogens)

Nose and sinuses

  • Nasal odors may be due to sinus infections or foreign bodies.
  • Halitosis is often stated to be a symptom of chronic rhinosinusitis; however, gold standard breath analysis techniques have not been applied.

Tonsils

  • Conditions of the tonsils which may be associated with halitosis include chronic caseous tonsillitis ,Tonsillolithiasis (in other words tonsil stones),peritonsillar abscess, actinomycosis, fungating malignancies and inflammatory myofibroblast tumor.

Esophagus

  • The lower esophageal sphincter, which is the valve between the stomach and the esophageal may not close properly due to a hiatal hernia or GERD, allowing acid to enter the esophagus and gases to escape to the mouth.
  • A Zenker’s diverticulum may also result in halitosis due to aging food retained in the esophagus.

Stomach

  • Generally, the esophagus is a closed and collapsed tube, and continuous flow of gas or putrid substances from the stomach indicates a health problem—such as reflux serious enough to be bringing up stomach contents or a fistula between the stomach and the oesophagus—which will demonstrate more serious manifestations than just foul odors.

Systemic diseases

There are a few systemic (e.g. non-oral) medical conditions that may cause foul breath odour, but these are infrequent in the general population. Such conditions are:

  1. Factor hepaticus an example of a rare type of bad breath caused by chronic liver failure
  2. Lower respiratory tract infections (e.g. bronchial and lung infections)
  3. Kidney infections and kidney failure
  4. Carcinoma
  5. Trimethyl-aminuria (e.g. “fish odors syndrome”)
  6. Diabetes mellitus.
  7. Metabolic conditions, e.g., resulting in elevated blood dimethyl sulphide [1]

Delusional halitosis

  • One quarter of the people seeking professional advice on bad breath have an exaggerated concern of having bad breath, known as halitophobia, delusional halitosis.

Other causes

Other less common reported causes from within the mouth include:

  • Deep carious lesions (in other words dental decay)
  • Recent dental extraction sockets – fill with blood clot, and provide an ideal habitat for bacterial proliferation
  • Interdental food packing – (food getting pushed down between teeth) – this can be caused by missing teeth, tilted, spaced or crowded teeth, or poorly contoured approximal dental fillings. Moreover, Food debris becomes trapped, undergoes slow bacterial putrefaction and release of malodourous volatiles. Food packing can also cause a localized periodontal reaction, characterized by dental pain that is relieved by cleaning the area of food packing with interdental brush or floss.
  • Acrylic dentures (i.e. plastic false teeth) – inadequate denture hygiene practices such as failing to clean and remove the prosthesis each night, may cause a malodour from the plastic itself or from the mouth as microbiota responds to the altered environment. Besides this, the plastic is actually porous, and the fitting surface is usually irregular, sculpted to fit the edentulous oral anatomy. These factors predispose to bacterial and yeast retention, which is accompanied by a typical smell.[1]
  • Oral infections
  • Oral ulceration
  • Fasting
  • Either Stress or anxiety
Menstrual cycle –
  • at mid cycle and during menstruation, increased breath VSC were reported in women.
Smoking –
  • Smoking is linked with periodontal disease, which is the second most common cause of oral mal odors. Smoking also has many other negative effects on the mouth, from increased rates of dental decay to premalignant lesions and even oral cancer.
  • Alcohol
  • Volatile foods – e.g., onion, garlic, durian, cabbage, cauliflower and radish. Volatile foodstuffs may leave malodourous residues in the mouth, which are the subject to bacterial putrefaction and VSC release. However, volatile foodstuffs may also cause halitosis via the blood borne halitosis mechanism.
  • Medication – often medications can cause xerostomia (in other words dry mouth) which results in increased microbial growth in the mouth.[2]

Sign & Symptoms of Bad Breath (Halitosis)

  • A white coating on the tongue especially at the back of the tongue
  • Dry mouth
  • Build up around teeth
  • Post-nasal drip, or mucous
  • Morning bad breath and a burning tongue
  • Thick saliva and a constant need to clear your throat
  • Constant sour, bitter metallic taste.[4]

Diagnosis of Bad Breath (Halitosis)

  • Diagnosis of halitosis is made from full history, examination or assessment of halitosis simply by smelling the exhaled air (i.e. organoleptic method), heliometer which give the amount of volatile amines, Sulphur compounds, methyl mercaptans and others in the breath.[3]

Treatment of Bad Breath (Halitosis)

  • All nutrients necessary for efficient digestion are essential, as well as digestive enzymes.
  • Improve the intestinal bacteria by eating yoghurt or supplementing with acidophilus can also be helpful.
  • Other treatments for halitosis involve proper mouth hygiene, including regular tooth brushing.
  • Often the use of dental floss is recommended.
  • Vitamin C is needed to prevent scurvy, which can cause gums to bleed also become infected.
  • A carefully balanced diet is essential for prevention of halitosis.
  • Avoid excessive consumption of carbohydrates may help prevent tooth decay that can cause bad breath. [1]

Homeopathic Treatment of Bad Breath (Halitosis)

Homeopathy treats the person as a whole. It means that homeopathic treatment focuses on the patient as a person, as well as his pathological condition. The homeopathic medicines selected after a full individualizing examination and case-analysis.

which includes

  • The medical history of the patient,
  • Physical and mental constitution,
  • Family history,
  • Presenting symptoms,
  • Underlying pathology,
  • Possible causative factors etc.

A miasmatic tendency (predisposition/susceptibility) also often taken into account for the treatment of chronic conditions.

What Homoeopathic doctors do?

A homeopathy doctor tries to treat more than just the presenting symptoms. The focus is usually on what caused the disease condition? Why ‘this patient’ is sick ‘this way’?.

The disease diagnosis is important but in homeopathy, the cause of disease not just probed to the level of bacteria and viruses. Other factors like mental, emotional and physical stress that could predispose a person to illness also looked for. No a days, even modern medicine also considers a large number of diseases as psychosomatic. The correct homeopathy remedy tries to correct this disease predisposition.

The focus is not on curing the disease but to cure the person who is sick, to restore the health. If a disease pathology not very advanced, homeopathy remedies do give a hope for cure but even in incurable cases, the quality of life can greatly improved with homeopathic medicines.

Homeopathic Medicines for Bad Breath (Halitosis):

The homeopathic remedies (medicines) given below indicate the therapeutic affinity but this is not a complete and definite guide to the homeopathy treatment of this condition. The symptoms listed against each homeopathic remedy may not be directly related to this disease because in homeopathy general symptoms and constitutional indications also taken into account for selecting a remedy.

Homoeopathic Approach:

Homeopathy treats the person as a whole. It means that homeopathic treatment focuses on the patient as a person, as well as his pathological condition. The homeopathic medicines are selected after a full individualizing examination and case-analysis, which includes the medical history of the patient, physical and mental constitution, family history, presenting symptoms, underlying pathology, possible causative factors etc.

A miasmatic tendency (predisposition/susceptibility) is also often taken into account for the treatment of chronic conditions. A homeopathy doctor tries to treat more than just the presenting symptoms. The focus is usually on what caused the disease condition? Why ‘this patient’ is sick ‘this way’.

The disease diagnosis is important but in homeopathy, the cause of disease is not just probed to the level of bacteria and viruses. Other factors like mental, emotional and physical stress that could predispose a person to illness are also looked for. No a days, even modern medicine also considers a large number of diseases as psychosomatic. The correct homeopathy remedy tries to correct this disease predisposition.

The focus is not on curing the disease but to cure the person who is sick, to restore the health. If a disease pathology is not very advanced, homeopathy remedies do give a hope for cure but even in incurable cases, the quality of life can be greatly improved with homeopathic medicines.

The homeopathic remedies (medicines) given below indicate the therapeutic affinity but this is not a complete and definite guide to the homeopathy treatment of this condition. The symptoms listed against each homeopathic remedy may not be directly related to this disease because in homeopathy general symptoms and constitutional indications are also taken into account for selecting a remedy.

Medicines: 

ARNICA
  • Fetid mouth and breath, dry and thirsty, bitter taste, taste as from bad eggs, soreness of gums around teeth and after teeth extraction. Septic conditions, tendency to tissue degeneration.
  • Worst – least touch, motion, rest, wine, damp cold.
  • Better lying down or with head low.
    PULSATILLA
  • Offensive odors from mouth.
  • Alterations of taste, bitter, bilious, greasy, salty, foul.
  • Loss of taste. Dry mouth without thirst, wants it washed frequently.
  • Crack in middle of lower lip. Yellow or white tongue covered with a tenacious mucous.
    MERCURY
  • Fetid odors from mouth, can smell it all over the room.
  • Saliva fetid and coppery.
  • Furrow in upper surface of tongue length wise, thick moist coating. Great thirst with moist mouth.
  • Worse – at night, wet damp weather, lying on right side, perspiring, warm room and warm bed.
    MERCURIUS DULCIS:
  • Offensive breath, salivation, sore gums, constant flow of dark putrid saliva, very offensive.
  • Ulceration of the throat with dysphagia. Especially for, Granular pharyngitis.
KREOSTUM:
  • Putrid odors and bitter taste, lips red and bleeding.
  • Very painfully dentition, child will not sleep.
  • Very rapid decay of teeth with spongy bleeding gums, teeth dark and crumbly.
  • Worse – in open air, cold, rest, when lying, after menses. On the other hand, Better – from warmth, motion, warm diet.
AURUM METALLICUM
  • Horrible odors from nose and mouth.
  • Putrid smell from nose, foul breath in girls in puberty, taste putrid or bitter, ulceration of gums.
  • Worse – cold weather, when getting cold, many winter-only complaints, from sunset to sunrise.[2]
    NITRIC ACID
  • Putrid breath, Painful pimples on the side of the tongue, tongue clean red and wet, with Centre furrow.
  • Teeth become loose soft and spongy. ulcers in soft palate, with sharp splinter like pains. bloody salivation.
  • Worse – evening and night, cold climate, and also hot weather.
  • Better – while riding in carriage.

Diet & Regimen of Bad Breath (Halitosis)

  • Practice good oral hygiene.
  • Furthermore, Brush twice a day with fluoride toothpaste to remove food debris and plaque.
  • Brush teeth after you eat.
  • See your dentist regularly — at least twice a year.
  • Stop smoking and chewing tobacco-based products.
  • Drink lots of water.
  • Chewing sugarless gum or sucking on sugarless candy also stimulates the production of saliva, which helps wash away food particles and bacteria.
  • Eat more fruits and vegetables and less meat. Apples, carrots, celery, and other hard fruits and vegetables help clear odor-causing plaque and food particles from your mouth.
  • Keep a log of the foods you eat. If you think they may be causing bad breath, bring the log to your dentist to review. Similarly, make a list of the medications you take. Some drugs may play a role in creating mouth odors.

What is Bad Breath?

Bad Breath (Halitosis) Is an unpleasant odor of the breath, the state or condition of having bad breath.

Homeopathic Medicines used by Homeopathic Doctors in treatment of Bad Breath?

  • Arnica
  • Pulsatilla
  • Mercury
  • Kreosotum
  • Aurum Metallicum
  • Nitric Acid

What are the symptoms of Bad Breath?

  • White coating on back of the tongue
  • Dry mouth
  • Build up around teeth
  • Post-nasal drip, or mucous
  • Morning bad breath
  • Burning tongue
  • Thick saliva
  • Constant need to clear your throat
  • Constant sour, bitter metallic taste

What are the causes of Bad Breath?

  • Poor oral hygiene
  • Viral infections (herpes simplex, HPV)
  • Dry and poorly cleansed tongue
  • Periodontal disease
  • Subgingival calculus
  • Sinus infections or foreign bodies
  • Chronic caseous tonsillitis ,Tonsillolithiasis
  • Hiatal hernia or GERD
  • Chronic liver failure
  • Lower respiratory tract infections
  • Diabetes mellitus

 

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