September 17, 2008

Bad breath? Take these tests

bad breathBad breath (Halitosis) is due to a variety of reasons; oral bacteria, odoriferous foods, negligence of dental hygiene and smoking being the key ones. However the repercussions of bad breath are many. You lose out on relationships, friends and almost face social ostracization. And the sad part for you is that it’s tough to tell if you have vampire breath, because your sense of smell adapts to your own odours. But here are some ways to test your breath and determine how bad it is before everyone else does.

The floss test:

Work a strand of flavourless dental floss between your back molars and give it a whiff. If it smells like rotten eggs, then most certainly you have bad breath. The smell actually is from plaque, which is a thin film of microorganisms, which everybody has to some extent. But the stronger your plaque smells, the more likely it is your breath stinks too.

Watch your tongue:

Stick out your tongue. Do you clean it on a regular basis with a tongue scraper? If not, in all probability it has a thick white coating comprising debris, bacteria and food particles that favours an ideal environment for volatile sulphur compounds. Now rub the back of your tongue with a clean piece of cloth. If it smells pretty nasty (like sulphur), then you have this dreaded problem of bad breath.

The saliva:

Now this isn’t quite a reliable method, but still the easiest way out. Lick the inside of your wrist, allow it to dry and then smell it. If it stinks, you know how your breath is or rather shouldn’t be!

If these methods don’t seem too reliable and you want to know for certain; ask your dentist – he/she may be able to help you with your problem. By the way there are several laboratorial methods for diagnosis of bad breath:

The halimeter:

Halimeter is a specialized type of sulfide monitor, which will measure the concentration of sulphur compounds in your mouth that produces halitosis or bad breath and determine if your breath stinks.

Gas chromatography:

This technology is specifically designed to digitally measure molecular levels of the three major VSCs in a sample of mouth air (hydrogen sulfide, methyl mercaptan, and dimethyl sulfide). But gas chromatographs are relatively expensive and require personnel with special training to operate them.

The BANA test:

Some of the bacteria that cause periodontal disease (gum disease) produce waste products that are quite odoriferous and as a result contribute in causing bad breath. The presence of some of these types of bacteria can be tested for by way of performing a BANA.

Organoleptic measurement test:

Here trained experts use their own sense of smell (the nose) to evaluate the breath.

See also: Home remedies for bad breath

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  1. Karuna6:17 PM

    Excellent post! So clear and informative!

  2. Shreeya8:42 AM

    i m very thankful to u for ur info and very helpful tips. it is my first time that i find a very beautiful site. congratulations for a very good site.

  3. Anonymous9:07 AM

    hi.. thanks for blogging about badbreath.

  4. This is absolutely fatastic. Thank you.

  5. Anonymous3:57 PM

    Get a tongue scaper! THAT is where the smelly germs like to reside! All those people who suggest mouth rinses have never been on the receiving side of someone's affection who nearly DRANK that crap to fight off the nasty breath due to a condition that forced this person to be a mouth-breather!

    The smell of Listerine, for example, is not too much more appealing than the stank it is meant to treat! *laughter*

    Keep flossing, however. THAT is the BEST thing that you can do to maintain periodontal health.

  6. Veena3:51 PM

    Take a good and a proper care of your mouth by brushing your teeth. Brush your tongue, too, because bacteria can grow there Brush your teeth at least twice a day and flossing once a day. Don’t smoke or use tobacco products, this is for sure. Flossing once a day will help to get rid of particles wedged between your teeth. Also, visit your dentist twice a year for regular checkups and cleanings.

  7. Vanamala9:00 AM

    Hi,ive searching in the internet on how to treat my bad breath,im shy to say this,after i eat i always brush my teeth day & night but still i can feel my breath smellls not so good,im desperate,i badly want to treat my bad breath,i suffer this bad breath since high school and i dont really join a group coz im shy,everytime i wake up in the morning i saw my teeth bleeding:

  8. Dr Ramachandra8:59 AM

    Dental floss is great for removing tiny food particles and plaque between teeth, where bristles can’t reach. Floss daily, but always immediately after meals that involve sticky foods

  9. Dentist9:43 AM

    Dry mouth. Saliva keeps the
    mouth clean and moist. Dry mouth allows dead cells to accumulate on
    your tongue, gums and cheeks. These cells decompose and cause odor.
    A dry mouth can naturally occur during sleep. This is what causes
    “morning breath.” Dry mouth is even more of a problem if
    you sleep with your mouth open. Some medications as well as smoking
    can lead to a chronic dry mouth, as can a problem with your salivary

  10. Anonymous8:48 AM

    Symptoms of bad Breath:
    Fool odor from the mouth. Bad taste in the mouth. Inflamed and bleeding gums. Teeth are coated with film or plaque, food debris trapped between teeth, pale or swollen gums. Symptoms of diabetes, lung disease, kidney failure or liver disease. Sore throat, swollen lymph nodes in the neck, fever, stuffy nose, a greenish or yellowish nasal discharge, a mucus-producing cough.


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