Dragon breath, toilet tongue, maggot mouth, the breath of death and even yuck mouth are all terms used to describe bad breath. A condition that everyone gets from time to time – there are multiple causes of bad breath that can lead to unpleasant experiences each day. Here are four crazy facts about bad breath that you may not know.
1. The bacteria living in your mouth can cause chronic bad breath
It turns out that the human mouth is a nice and cozy home for bacteria, which can cause bad breath. According to the American Dental Association, ADA, “Bad breath can happen anytime thanks to the hundreds of types of bad breath-causing bacteria that naturally lives in your mouth.” The ADA describes the mouth as a “natural hothouse that allows these bacteria to grow.” Fortunately, proper dental care can help eliminate most of the bad breath-causing bacteria.
2. Morning Breath/bad breath is inevitable
There is a difference between having bad breath and having chronic bad breath. Eating certain foods or poor dental hygiene can lead to bad breath, but will not cause chronic bad breath right away. In fact, morning breath is a natural part of the day for most. The treatment for bad breath involves constant dental care, cleaning the teeth, using mouthwash and visiting a dentist on a regular basis. If the condition is extreme enough, a dentist may be the only person able to spot the exact cause and offer treatment.
3. Medical conditions or medication can cause chronic bad breath
It is no surprise that eating certain foods can cause bad breath, but people may not realize that medications can also be a contributing factor. “A number of medications also may produce an unpleasant taste or odor or may cause dry mouth, which in turn leads to bad breath,” the ADA explains. Before consuming a medication, it might be wise to check the label for the side effects. In other cases, the medical condition can also cause bad breath.
The ADA adds that medical conditions such as sinus infections, lung infections, tonsillitis, gastrointestinal disorders, bronchitis, diabetes and more can cause bad breath.
4. The term Halitosis was invented by Listerine
People may not know this next fact, but the Listerine company coined the term halitosis. In 1895, “Listerine was marketed to dentists after studies showed that it was also good for killing germs found in the mouth,” the Listerine website explains. The website states that in 1914, Listerine was the first prescription product sold over the counter that could kill oral germs. Unfortunately for Listerine, sales of their product were not doing well in stores. However, in the 1920s, “Listerine coins the term ‘halitosis’ to describe bad breath and sales take off,” the Listerine website adds.
Chronic bad breath or ‘halitosis’ can still affect people, but it is not usually a permanent problem for many. By visiting a dentist for a cleaning, the dentist will be able to find what is causing the bad breath and help treat it.
Explore additional oral health topics covered on our website:
At Vanek Dentistry in Costa Mesa, we will customize your treatment to match your needs and schedule. Our professional staff creates a calm atmosphere for you during the appointment and treatment process. We will identify any dental issues you are struggling with and find the best solution.
Our staff will create a calm and comforting atmosphere at the office to ease patients into the procedure. We can help prevent damage to your teeth and set you on track for a lifetime of pristine oral health. At Vanek Dentistry, your dental health is our prime concern.
Dr. Eric Vanek, d.d.s
Eric has been a practicing dental surgeon for over 20 years and is the owner of Vanek Dentistry, a family dental practice in Costa Mesa, CA.
Published November 18, 2016. Updated December 15, 2023