bad breath

Prevent Bad Breath With Dental Cleanings

January 18, 2024

You may try to cover up bad breath with things like gum, breath mints, and mouthwash, but these are only good at masking odors temporarily. If you notice (or if someone else has) that you have consistent bad breath, you may need to look at the root cause. Constant bad breath is likely an underlying oral concern that is the main problem. To combat bad breath, it is vital to schedule regular dental cleanings and exams.

If you find yourself doing everything you can to combat your bad breath, it’s a good idea to visit your dentist and dental hygienist to assess your bad breath and find a solution. In this article, we’ve gathered information about the causes of bad breath and how regular dental cleanings can help.

The Cause Of Bad Breath

Let’s start with the leading cause of bad breath, also called halitosis. People with frequent or chronic bad breath might feel embarrassed, self-conscious, and even have anxiety when talking face-to-face in social environments.

Bad breath can be caused by a few different things:

  • Food: Some foods are notoriously known for causing bad breath. Anytime you eat food, bits and pieces can be left behind, creating odor-causing bacteria.
  • Dry Mouth: The natural cleaning process in your mouth can be disrupted and cause odors when you lack saliva, also known as xerostomia.
  • Medication: Some medications might cause a release of chemicals that are carried on your breath. Medication can also cause dry mouth and bad breath.
  • Illness or Disease: Sinus and throat infections often can contribute to bad breath, as well as some diseases like cancer or chronic reflux.
  • Tobacco Use: Not only can tobacco make your breath smell bad, but it also can increase your risk of gum disease, which also leads to halitosis.
  • Oral Infection or Gum Disease: Gum disease, tooth decay, oral surgery wounds, and mouth sores all can be causes of bad breath.

How A Full Dental Cleaning Can Help

Regular dental cleanings significantly impact keeping your teeth and gums healthy. During a dental cleaning, a dentist or dental hygienist removes bacteria, plaque, and tartar buildup from the surface of your teeth. Additionally, they may offer other preventative services during your visit, like dental sealants or fluoride treatments.

What to Expect at Your Appointment

If you have anxiety or fear of the dentist, talk to them ahead of time. Some may offer sedation dentistry options to help you stay relaxed during your appointment. 

Here is a short guide to what to expect at your typical cleaning appointment so you can mentally prepare ahead:


Before you start your dentist or hygienist will examine your mouth, teeth, and gums for any irregularities or signs of decay. In this step, your dentist or hygienist will assess cavities, sores, or painful areas and catch early and advanced signs of more serious issues.

Scaling and Polishing

Plaque is formed when food stays on your teeth and creates bacteria. Without the removal of this plaque, it turns to tartar. Tartar build-up can lead to gum disease, which is one of the main reasons behind bad breath. Tartar is only able to be removed by scaling and polishing. Scaling clears away plaque, destroys bacteria, and improves gum health, reducing the risk of halitosis.


Your dentist and hygienist are there to educate you on how to take care of your oral health better. They can help you understand what foods and habits are contributing to your bad breath and help you create steps to take between your dental cleaning visits. Depending on your needs, your dentist or hygienist may offer you some preventative services that can help until your next cleaning.

Advantages Of Regular Cleanings 

Getting routine dental cleanings has plenty of benefits:

  • Reduces your risk of serious oral health problems
  • Improves overall body health
  • Prevents bad breath
  • Reduces cost by stopping issues before they start

There are not many risks or complications that come with dental cleanings, but some people may have temporary side effects like sensitivity or soreness. You can take an over-the-counter pain reliever; the tenderness should dissipate in a few days.

Eliminate Bad Breath With Dr. Carrie Muzny

For optimal oral health, you should choose a combination of good at-home oral hygiene habits paired with professional dental cleanings at least once every six months. You can ask your dentist if coming twice a year is good for you, or they may want you to come in more frequently if you are prone to cavities and gum disease. When it comes to your oral health, getting treatment for any concerns is better to do sooner than later.

Are you dealing with bad breath? At the offices of Dr. Carrie Muzny, DDS, we help patients in Texas from The Woodlands, Benders Landing, Woodforest, Spring, North Houston, and the Conroe/Montgomery area. We lead with a compassionate approach with the best equipment and the latest technology offered in dentistry. Contact us today to schedule an appointment so we can get you on track with a healthy, beautiful smile.

Share This Article With Your Friends


Dental Problems

Recent Posts