The Link Between Bad Breath and Gum Disease

The occasional bout of bad breath happens to everyone. Everything from your morning cup of coffee to an onion-filled salad for lunch can take its toll on your breath, especially if you don’t get a chance to brush after a meal. However, if you’ve noticed that you have persistent bad breath despite your best efforts to keep it fresh, it might be a sign of gum disease.

At Manhasset Dental Arts, our team of dentists and dental professionals offer a range of general and cosmetic dentistry services at our dental practice in Manhasset, New York, to prevent and treat gum disease and other oral health problems.

What is the connection between bad breath and gum disease?

Also known as “perio breath,” gum disease-related goes deeper than what you ate (and drank) at dinner. Poor oral hygiene is the most common cause of gum disease (but there are others, like genetics and underlying health conditions). When bacteria solidifies between your teeth and gums, it hardens into gum disease-causing plaque and tartar. If left untreated, plaque and tartar buildup can wreak havoc on your oral health. The most common symptoms of gum disease are inflammation, bleeding gums, and you guessed it - bad breath.

Gum disease is progressive, so it generally starts off mild and gets worse over time. The earlier you catch and treat it, the less likely you’ll be to suffer long-term damage. Late-stage gum disease (periodontitis) can lead to tooth loss, and even affect your general health in some cases. 

How can you tell if your bad breath is a sign of gum disease?

Like other health issues, prevention is the best defense against gum disease (and annoying symptoms like bad breath). If you haven’t been practicing good oral hygiene (brushing your teeth after meals and flossing once a day), and it’s been more than six months to a year since your last visit to the dentist for a check-up and cleaning, you could be at risk for gingivitis (the first stage of gum disease).

In addition to persistent and lingering bad breath, you should be aware of the other signs and symptoms of gum disease, which include:

If you notice any symptoms that seem out of the ordinary, don’t hesitate to schedule a dental exam. Although bad breath, bleeding, and inflammation are common signs of gum disease, it’s also possible not to have noticeable symptoms at first, so don’t skip your preventive dental care either!

Breath mints may temporarily mask perio breath, but only your dentist can diagnose and treat gum disease and save your smile and oral health!

For more information about the signs and symptoms of gum disease and what you can do to protect yourself, contact us today to schedule an appointment at our office in Manhasset, New York.

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