If your friends or family members have recently been commenting on your unpleasant breath, you may feel insulted—but their concern may help you identify a serious oral condition such as gum disease, enabling you to seek treatment before severe damage occurs. This guide can help you determine when bad breath, or halitosis, may be a pressing dental health concern:
Causes of Bad Breath
Most forms of bad breath are short-lived and easily cured. The odor-causing compounds can stem from foods recently consumed, such as onions or garlic, or from a dry mouth due to sleep. However, persistent bad breath can be a sign of a serious dental condition. If you tend to skip tooth brushing sessions and rarely floss, you may be experiencing gingivitis, which is the beginning stage of gum disease. Alternatively, you could have an oral abscess due to an untreated cavity or an infected wound. Fortunately, chronic halitosis does not always have such sinister causes—it can also stem from smoking, a sinus condition, or as a side effect of medication.
When to See a Dentist
Although any persistent oral condition that causes distress should be evaluated by a dental care professional, there are certain warning signs that you should pay particular attention to. Swelling, pain, and redness in a specific area in your mouth or throat can indicate an infection, particularly if fluid is leaking from the spot in question. If your gums are bright red and painful to the touch, or if any permanent teeth feel loose, schedule an appointment right away for a gum disease evaluation. By seeing a dentist soon after you notice these symptoms, you can more easily find relief and may even save your teeth.
The professionals at Colorado Advanced Dentistry can help you determine the cause of halitosis and provide treatment for chronic dental conditions using the latest technology. Don’t let this important warning sign go unnoticed—call (720) 420-1103 to schedule an oral health evaluation.