Causes of halitosis explored by our dentist

It is a social faux pas and one that can instantly put people off of talking to you on a date; bad breath.


Indeed, everyone has had bad breath at one time or another and may have been able to simply chew on some gum to get rid of it. When it becomes chronic, it is known as halitosis and can impact every aspect of your daily life.

But it rarely occurs in a vacuum, and our team at Northern Beaches Dental can help.

When you come to see our dentist Mackay and are suffering from persistent bad breath, we will aim to alleviate the odour with some good old-fashioned diagnostics and professional cleaning. We will also advise you on how to prevent it from coming back, thus eliminating it long-term. Great!

So, what are the most common causes of bad breath or halitosis, according to our dentist Mackay?

Poor oral hygiene

Not brushing your teeth and tongue regularly can lead to the buildup of bacteria in your mouth, which can produce bad odours. In this instance, you may simply need to up your dental routine and use flossing thread to remove bacteria and plaque in hard-to-reach places.

Our dentist Mackay will always be happy to advise you on how to adapt your dental hygiene routine to get the best results.

Dry mouth

Saliva can cleanse the mouth and remove bacteria, so a lack of saliva (due to certain medications or medical conditions) can cause bad breath.

We can help with this, too, by providing you with saliva-increasing tablets and mouthwashes to help keep your mouth clean. If your dry mouth is a side effect of medications, it may be worth talking to your general or family doctor for advice.

Gum disease

Gum disease is an infection of the gums and the tendons that support the teeth, and it can cause very bad breath. It is caused by the buildup of plaque, which is a sticky film of bacteria that can form on the teeth. If the plaque is not removed, it can harden into a substance called tartar. As you can imagine, both of these can irritate the gums and cause them to become inflamed, leading to gum disease, which can cause bad breath as well as other symptoms such as red, swollen, or tender gums, bleeding gums when brushing, and loose teeth.

Tobacco products

Smoking and chewing tobacco can cause bad breath and increase the risk of gum disease, as well as oral cancer. Luckily, our team at Northern Beaches Dental can help with smoking cessation, so if you are looking to kick the habit, call our team for help today.

Medical conditions

Certain medical conditions, such as sinus infections, respiratory tract infections, and some digestive disorders, can cause bad breath. Indeed, some of these, such as gastro-oesophageal reflux disease, or GERD, can also cause acid to rise into the mouth, which can create issues with the enamel on your teeth. So, if you have GERD, constant acid reflux, or other digestive disorders that can cause bad breath, please see our team today, and we will aim to minimise the impact that they have on your teeth and oral health.


All treatment carries risks. Individual consultation is required with one of our practitioners to ensure that the treatment is right for you.