Medically known as halitosis, bad breath is a condition that even health kids can experience in some occasions. If you have noticed that your child’s breath isn’t that pleasant, there is solution for that. Most of the time, improper oral hygiene is the cause of bad breath in kids.

What causes bad breath?

There are several factors that contribute to bad breath. Below are some of the most common causes:

1.       Dry mouth. Saliva helps cleanse your tongue, gums and entire mouth. When there is a reduced salivary flow, one condition that may occur is xerostomia, which is a contributor to bad breath.

2.       Bacteria on the tongue. Odor-causing bacteria often reside on the tongue. It is important to brush not only the teeth but the mouth as well to prevent accumulation of bacteria, leading to bad breath.

3.       Poor oral hygiene. If your kid does not floss and brush his teeth regularly, it can result to bad breath. If dental plaque isn’t brushed away, bacteria can affect the tooth enamel and irritate the gums, causing more issues. The tongue can house odor-causing bacteria, so make sure your child is brushing his tongue too.

4.       Mouth infections. Bad breath can be caused by tooth cavities, mouth sores, oral surgery or even plaque buildup.

5.       Mouth breathing. A child may breathe through his mouth due to a sleep habit or a stuffy nose.  When he does it, it dries up the mouth and prevents saliva from washing away mouth bacteria, causing bad breath.

6.       Medications. Certain medications breaks down inside the body and releases chemicals leading to bad breath.

7.       Food. Consuming foods with strong odor such as certain spices, onions and garlic can affect the freshness of his breath.

8.       A disease or illness. If your child is suffering from tonsillitis, a sinus infection or allergies, bad breath may happen.

How to prevent bad breath in kids

Having a healthy teeth has a vital role to a child’s overall health. Help your child avoid bad breath by introducing an oral care routine.

·         Encourage your child to brush his teeth two times a day using an ADA-accepted fluoride toothpaste that promotes fresh breath. Be sure to supervise young kids so they won’t swallow the toothpaste.

·         When brushing his teeth, don’t forget to clean the tongue as this is where bacteria homes and thrives.

·         Daily flossing is important to remove odor-causing food residue from the teeth.

·         Make sure to buy a new toothbrush every few months as dull bristles can’t efficiently eliminate debris and plaque from the teeth.

·         Avoid bad breath and other dental concerns by having regular professional cleanings and checkups.