Top Causes of Smelly Breath Even After Brushing

November 2, 2022

While most people deal with bad breath at some point, others struggle with persistent bad breath, even with a solid oral hygiene routine. An expert in family dentistry in Bridgeport confirms that some folks can have less-than-pleasant breath even after brushing. Let’s take a closer look at the possible reasons behind this oral health issue.

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Why Does My Breath Smell Even After Brushing?

Previous Poor Oral Hygiene

If you’ve previously had poor oral hygiene, don’t be surprised if you have consistent bad breath even if you’ve already brushed for the day. Failing to maintain a good oral hygiene routine causes bacteria, plaque, and tartar to build up on your teeth. Unless you change your ways, these consequences can lead to gum disease, which a day of good brushing can’t eliminate. In such cases, a deep cleaning may be necessary to remove the plaque and tartar buildup and eliminate bad breath.


Bad-breath-causing bacteria can hide in cavities in teeth. Unfortunately, there’s no guarantee that brushing can address your breath issue. Unless your dentist uses dental fillings to treat your cavities, your breath won’t smell like daisies.

Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD)

GERD can cause your stomach acids, regurgitated bile, and undigested food to back up into your esophagus. Besides irritating your esophageal lining and causing extreme discomfort, this condition can make your breath smell like sour, partially undigested food. Since GERD can manifest as a mild acid reflux or a severe reflux episode, treatment depends on the severity or frequency of its symptoms. 

Your doctor may prescribe over-the-counter medications to reduce acid production or stabilize the lower sphincter of your esophagus. Additionally, they may also advise you to avoid certain foods and beverages that may aggravate your symptoms.  

Sinus and Respiratory Infections

Your breath could smell like feces if you’re dealing with a sinus or respiratory infection. Colds, viruses, strep throat, and bronchitis are infections that can generate bacteria that move from the nose to the throat, leading to bad breath. On the other hand, sinus infections that are prevalent in children have symptoms such as a fever, headache, fatigue, postnasal drip, irritability, nausea, vomiting, and dark-colored nasal mucus.

In most cases, doctors prescribe antibiotics and over-the-counter medication to treat coughing, congestion, pain, discomfort, and other symptoms that may accompany a sinus or respiratory infection.

Underlying Health Conditions

Did you know that certain health conditions can cause bad breath? Kidney failure, diabetes, peptic ulcer, liver failure, or intestinal blockage triggers changes to the body’s bacteria levels or chemical changes in the bloodstream, leading to malodorous breath.

Dry Mouth

Saliva plays a crucial role in your mouth. Besides breaking down food, it aids in chewing, swallowing, and speaking. Above all,  it keeps your mouth hydrated, washes away food particles, and keeps oral bacteria at a manageable level.  

You’ll experience increased mouth dryness when your salivary glands fail to produce enough saliva. Unfortunately, having a dry mouth can lead to more bacteria building up on your teeth, increasing your risk for tooth decay, gum disease, and bad breath. It’s important to note that taking certain medications, smoking or chewing tobacco, and regular alcohol consumption can also lead to a dry mouth.

To relieve your dry mouth, try chewing sugar-free gum to stimulate salivary flow. Since caffeine can make your mouth drier, you’ll want to limit your intake. Additionally, it’s best to stay away from tobacco and alcohol. If your medication is causing your dry mouth, ask your doctor about a different medication or treatment.

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Quality Family Dentistry in Bridgeport

At Brooklawn Dental Associates, we offer high-quality dental care services to help you and your loved ones enjoy a lifetime of healthy and beautiful smiles. Contact us today to make an appointment.

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