Signs and Symptoms of Halitosis
Read about Signs and Symptoms of Halitosis presented in simple easy to understand language.
Having "morning breath" or bad breath when you wake up is normal and might not be a cause of major concern, drinking some water should fix this if it is not a bigger problem. Since it's difficult to smell our own breath we can often time tend towards either extreme of worrying about it for no reason or being completely oblivious to our condition. But there are many indicators that you might be prone to or suffering from bad breath apart from the obvious condition of foul-smelling breath. Signs and Symptoms of Halitosis can be caused by having an environment in which bad breath producing bacteria thrive in the mouth.
Common Signs and symptoms of Halitosis:
Having any one of these symptoms is not always an indicator of bad breath or some symptoms may be indicators of transient bad breath.
• Metallic or sour/bitter taste in the mouth
The presence of an acidic oral environment causes metallic or sour, bitter taste in the mouth. The bacteria which create sulfur compounds are present in the rear of the tongue which is where the sour, bitter, metallic tastes occur. These tastes could be because of any number of factors depending on the individual problem like sinus leakage, phlegm, throat infections, dental procedures, dry mouth etc.
• Thick white coating on the tongue
It is the most common cause of bad breath. The whitish coating found in the posterior region of the tongue is where bad breath causing bacteria live and thrive.
• Incessant dry mouth and throat
Oral moisture keeps bacteria growth in check. Saliva is considered the best natural mouth rinse and hence when we don’t produce sufficient saliva our mouths become dry and more conducive to the growth of “anaerobic” bacteria. The term “anaerobic” means “without oxygen”.
• Burning tongue syndrome
Prevalent among older people and people with diabetes, the person may have a burning sensation on their tongue when they are thirsty. This might be caused by hormonal changes and common among both sexes, though slightly more common among females. It is advisable to not use any oral rinses or other irritants which may burn your tongue when these symptoms are present.
• Loss of confidence in social situations
Bad breath or halitosis could be an underlying cause for loss of confidence in social situations for some people. The longer the person struggles with bad breath the more it takes a toll on his social confidence.
• Stress and low self-esteem
Halitosis is often caused by a reaction to stress which in turn might cause low self-esteem in an individual. Sometimes it is temporary and goes away as soon as the stressful ordeal like giving a speech or catching a bus passes. Drying mouth is a common effect of stress, but other bodily odors are also enhanced during times of stress.
• If you suffer from Sinusitis, post nasal drip, allergies, mucous and phlegm
You are more likely to suffer from bad breath and lousy tastes as the anaerobic, sulfur-producing bacteria will start to feed off the proteins in the post nasal drip, mucus and phlegm.
• If you have your tonsils which could lead to globs called tonsil stones
Which in turn has a high number of bacteria due to the mucous draining the throat and the sulfur compounds hiding in the crevices and nooks of the tonsils
You should also check for bad breath if:
- People visibly back away when you say something
- You are often offered gum or breath mints
- You are breathing through the mouth
- If you have a bad taste after consuming beverages like sodas, milk-based drinks, alcohol, caffeinated drinks etc.
- Mouthwashes, brushing and other forms of regular hygiene don’t seem to make much difference in your mouth feeling clean.
- If you have thick saliva and mucus feeling in your mouth.