Bad Breath Is Also Known As “HALITOSIS” Or “FETOR ORIS”.

There Are Various Causes Of Halitosis. The Most Common Being Poor Oral Hygiene. Halitosis Is The 3rd Most Common Reason Why Patients Visit A Dental Clinic For Treatment.

Causes Of Halitosis

  • Poor Oral Hygiene : Main Reason For Bad Breath Due To The Increase In Number Of Bacterial Count Resulting In Bad Odour In The Mouth
  • Tongue Coatings 
  • Food Lodgement In Between Your Teeth:  The Foul Odour In Such Cases Is Caused By The Breakdown Of Food Particles In Between The Tooth Surfaces.
  • Certain Odour Producing Food Products: Like Garlic, Onions And Particular Spices
  • Smoking And Consumption Of Tobacco Products
  • Fasting
  • Xerostomia Or Dry Mouth: Saliva Has A Natural Property To Cleanse The Mouth. In Certain Cases, There Is A Drastic Reduction Of Saliva Due To Reasons Like Radiation Therapy, Which Causes Foul Breath.
  • Certain Medications: Some Medications, Examples Are Nitrates, Chemotherapeutic Drugs, Some Tranquillizers, Such As Phenothiazines Also Result In Foul Breath.
  • Post Oral Surgical Procedures
  • Infections In The Mouth: Tooth Decay And Infections Of The Mouth (Like Periocoronitis, Gingivitis, Periodontitis And Space Infections)  Are Also A Reason For Halitosis.
  • Nose And Throat Conditions: Tonsilitis, Chronic Infection And Inflammation In The Nose, Sinuses Or Throat, Can Contribute To Postnasal Drip Resulting In Bad Breath.
  • Gastroesophageal  Reflux Disorder
  • Certain Cancers: Liver Cancer And Some Metabolic Disorders Can Also Result In Halitosis
  • Rare Causes Of Halitosis : Ketoacidosis And Bowel Obstruction

There Are Various Self Assessment Tests To Know Whether One Is Suffering From Halitosis:

1. The Wrist Test: Patient Should Lick The Wrist With Their Tongue And Let It Dry For 5 -10 Seconds, Then Smell The Wrist From An Inch Away.

2. The Spoon Test: Similar To The Wrist Test, One Can Lick The Back Of The Spoon And Let It Dry For 5 – 10 Seconds And Smell The Spoon For An Offensive Odour.

3. The Airbag Test: Patient Should Take An Odourless Paper Bag And Blow Air Into It And Close It. After 10 Seconds The Airbag Should Be Opened And Smelled.

4. The Floss Test: Patient Needs To Take A Floss And Use It In The Back Teeth Region In Between Teeth. Once The Flossing Is Done , The Patient Needs To Smell The Floss Used In Between Teeth From An Inches Distance In Order To Inspect For Any Offensive Odour.


Good Oral Hygiene And Regular Tongue Cleaning Is The Basis For Drastically Reducing Bad Breath.

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