Halitosis may sound like a fancy term, but it is not a term you want said in your presence. It refers to bad breath. Halitosis feeds on bacteria in your mouth, causing an unpleasant odor for you and everyone around you.

For one, certain food can cause halitosis to be more severe; foods like garlic or onion are especially stinky, because they are absorbed into your bloodstream. Poor oral care can also lead to halitosis. Your mouth is a petri dish for bacteria, so the less teeth are taken care of, the more likely food collects and teeth rot. Even the health of your tongue can affect the scent emitted from your mouth, so eliminating unwanted bacteria can be lessened with the use a tongue scraper. Dry mouth, often caused by certain medications, mouth breathing or dehydration can also make breath unpleasant. Retainers, dentures, braces and other mouth fixtures, if left uncleaned, can also lead to additional collections of bacteria in unwanted places.

Fortunately, regular brushing and flossing, mouth wash, and chewing sugar free gum can help eliminate the unwanted odors. It is never a bad idea to see your local, friendly dentist for a thorough examination of the problem, so the best course of action can be taken.