Cleaning dental bridges can be cumbersome. The spaces between the pontics (or false teeth) and the gum line tend to be areas where bacteria and particles of food can gather. Because of such, a specialized flossing technique for removal is required. If those spaces are not cleaned properly, patients can experience severe bad breath or halitosis. Today, Dr. James Fondriest, of Lake Forest Dental Arts in Lake Forest, IL shares a few facts about bad breath that stem from improper dental bridge care.
#1: Halitosis and Bad Breath Are Synonymous
“Halitosis” is the formal name for the phrase bad breath. The word halitosis dates back to the late 19th century and comes from the New Latin. The origin of the word comes from “halitus,” meaning breath or vapor, and the Greek word, “osis,” which means disease-causing condition.
#2: Bad Breath is A Lucrative Business
Halitosis is a billion-dollar industry. In fact, Americans spend roughly three billion dollars a year on gums, mints, and other breath freshening products. Despite countless promises to consumers for fresh breath, the best preventive measure to improve halitosis is stellar oral care, which includes thoroughly cleaning and disinfecting artificial teeth and all fixed dental restorations, such as bridges and dentures.
#3 Bad Breath Could Indicate Disease
Your halitosis could indicate a more serious condition such as disease. If such lifestyle changes as daily brushing and flossing prove to be ineffective for eliminating halitosis, you may need to see a medical professional. Persistent bad breath or individuals who complain of a constant “bad taste in the mouth” may indicate gum or periodontal disease.
#4 There are Many Causes for Bad Breath
While halitosis begins in the mouth, there are several possible causes for it. Some of those causes include:
- Certain foods
- Poor dental hygiene
- The use of tobacco products
- Certain medications
- Dry mouth
- Infections of the mouth
- Sinus issues such as post nasal drip
#5 Dental Bridgework May Be Damaged, Causing Bad Breath
Your dental bridgework may have become damaged, causing halitosis. Small hairline cracks, for example may be the gateway for food particles and bacteria. Brushing and flossing alone may not prove to stop bad breath. If damaged or cracked bridgework is suspected, Dr. Fondriest will provide a comprehensive examination of your dental bridgework, inspecting it for possible cracks and damages.
#6 Poor-Fitting Bridgework May Contribute to Bad Breath
Occasionally, the fit of dental bridgework may not be perfect. The sealing cement from bridgework may have a small break around the margin of the tooth near the gum line. When this crack happens, food and bacteria can enter and get wedged underneath the crown, leading to mouth odor. The break can also contribute to decay. If you suspect your dental bridges are fitting poorly, consider making an appointment with Dr. Fondriest, ensuring proper fit.
#7 The Tongue Harbors the Worst Halitosis-Causing Bacteria
A daily tooth-brushing regimen should include cleaning the tongue. Although the soft tissues in your mouth trap bad smells quite easily, the tongue is by far the worst. Tongues confine most of the bad breath-causing bacteria even more so than cheeks or gums. The daily brushing or scraping of your tongue, you will remove the layers of bacteria that cause bad breath. The brushing of the tongue will also help eliminate the build-up of plaque film that dulls taste buds. Therefore, a clean, fresh, and bacteria-free tongue will allow your food to taste better.
#8 Diet Can Be a Cause of Bad Breath
A poor diet can be a culprit of bad breath. Garlic, onions, certain dairy products, and spicy foods can increase the chances of getting bad breath. Drinking coffee and alcohol may also propel halitosis. For halitosis-producing foods, you may consider drinking water after consumption. If you can brush and floss your teeth after a halitosis-causing meal, try taking advantage of such.
#9 Water Picking May Help Keep Halitosis at Bay
One of the most wide-spread causes of dental bridge-induced halitosis is the entrapment of plaque, food, and bacteria. Despite the best efforts to remove it with a toothbrush or dental floss, there may still be some food particles or bacteria that will still stay lodged. Water picking is a great way to remove
those pieces of food that refuse to move otherwise. Water flossing or water picks utilize a mild but effective jet pressure of water, able to enter into the small areas of bridgework. Water picks are inexpensive and can be purchased at your pharmacy or store.
#10 Salvia Prevents Bad Breath
When you are properly hydrated, you produce significant amounts of saliva. Saliva prevents unwanted bacteria from entering into your mouth, as it helps to clean the mouth. Salvia also helps to keep the mouth clear of food particles and helps keep the mouth clean. Drinking vast amounts of water is ideal in helping to keep you hydrated. Consider keeping bottled water by your side throughout your day.
#11 Regular Check-Ups Can Help Keep Halitosis Away
Regular check-ups at Lake Forest Dental Arts will help to keep bad breath at bay. While dental bridges offer many benefits, there may be issues that may arise with this long-lasting, restorative treatment. Dr. Fondriest and the team at Lake Forest Dental Arts provide comprehensive general dentistry services for patients. In addition to your dental evaluation and cleaning, we will check your dental bridges for proper fit, cracks, breaks, and damage. Dr. Fondriest will sit with you and discuss appropriate teeth-cleaning suggestions for bridges, ensuring your bad breath is eliminated. We will also offer you with details about proper and effective dental hygiene and information about how to care for your dental bridges.
Contact Lake Forest Dental Arts to Learn More
At Lake Forest Dental Arts, we believe in providing respect, care, and compassion for each patient. For over 30 years, our practice has served the metro Chicago area, including the North Shore and Northwest suburbs. To learn more, or to schedule an appointment with your Lake Forest, IL dental team member, contact us online or call us at (847)234-0517.