What are the symptoms of bad breath

If reflux is responsible for bad breath ...

... then this is usually a very great burden for those affected. Close contact with others, talking, and even kissing can quickly become a source of fear and uncertainty. Because those who suffer from bad breath due to reflux fear the rejection of their fellow human beings. But: Why can heartburn be a cause of bad breath and, above all, what can you do about it? We'll tell you here.

Bad breath from reflux - how can that be?

Bad breath is a real pain for those affected. Not only is bad breath extremely embarrassing to them, it can also hardly be concealed from other people. Colleagues, friends or the partner often cannot avoid reacting to the unpleasant smell - if you are affected yourself, you want to be there prefer to sink into the ground. To a large extent, this is also due to the fact that you do not even notice the bad breath yourself. The sensory cells and brain are so used to our own body odor or bad breath that we no longer perceive it as an annoying odor - it goes between all the other sensory impressions.

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The causes of bad breath are many; in many cases, reflux is to blame. But what is the connection between reflux and bad breath? Very easily: The contents of the stomach flow back into the esophagus - for example, because too much stomach acid is produced or the sphincter muscle between the esophagus and stomach is not strong enough - the digested food is no longer in the "sealed" stomach, but in the esophagus, from where it is no longer far to the mouth is.

The smelling mixture from chyme and gastric juice can then be perceived even when breathing out or speaking. If the heartburn improves, the bad breath usually also decreases.

Aside from reflux, there are also the following causes for bad breath in question:

  • Food with garlic or onions
  • Luxury goods such as coffee, alcohol or cigarettes
  • too little saliva in the mouth
  • Plaque on teeth or tongue
  • Inflammation of the lining of the mouth or tonsils
  • Respiratory diseases
  • Leftover food in the mouth or on dentures
  • chronic runny nose
  • a fungal infection
  • certain drugs
  • inadequate oral hygiene

If reflux is the culprit and thus the cause behind the bad breath, this is usually still expressed through other typical symptoms, for example:

If you experience these symptoms, it is very likely that your bad breath is caused by reflux.

Diagnosing reflux-related halitosis

Are you unsure whether you also get bad breath? This is the case for many of those affected, after all, one's own bad breath is usually imperceptible. Most people also hesitate to point out their bad breath to loved ones because they don't want to hurt them. But only those who know about their problem can do something about it. So take courage if you suspect you may be suffering from bad breath: Ask someone you trust to sniff your breath and tell them honestly whether there is a bad odor. If that is the case, you can then visit your family doctor or dentist - he will help you to solve the bad breath problem quickly.

Good to know

The Treatment of bad breath - regardless of whether due to reflux or other reasons - is advisable in any case. Because often the causes can not only ensure bad breath, but also permanent damage and secondary diseases in the oral cavity or esophagus. A visit to the doctor in good time is helpful to identify the causes of bad breath and to counteract its development - this way you put an end to the embarrassing bad breath early.

Effective bad breath therapy is based solely on the underlying cause. That is why there is always a bad breath treatment at the beginning extensive physical examination. The dentist checks the oral cavity for inflammation or pathological changes. The family doctor checks the airways, esophagus and stomach. He can use his patient's descriptions and methods such as gastroscopy to diagnose existing reflux.

Treat the causes of bad breath

If heartburn and the associated reflux have been identified as the cause of the bad breath, your doctor will advise you most likely recommend the following:

  • Medicationthat neutralize stomach acid (antacids) or inhibit its formation from the start (proton pump inhibitors).
  • Home remedieswhich help to alleviate the discomfort naturally.
  • Lose weight if you are overweightto relieve pressure on the sphincter at the entrance to the stomach.
  • Change in eating habitsto prevent reflux through proper diet.
  • Thorough oral hygiene, which counteracts acid-related damage in the mouth and thus the worsening of bad breath.
  • In severe cases, a reflux operation, where surgical measures put an end to reflux.

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There are also a few short term methodswhich you can take against bad breath yourself in case of emergency:

  • the use of breath sprays
  • sucking mints
  • chewing raw ginger
  • regular mouth rinses
  • Rinsing with mouthwash
  • avoiding garlic and onions

If you follow these tips and let your doctor determine the cause of your bad breath, your bad breath problems will soon be a thing of the past.

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