Good Morning, Bad Breath

Morning BreathNo matter what mouthwash commercials say, your morning breath will always be a little unpleasant. No amount of mouthwash or brushing can mask the odor of the night before because what happens in the mouth overnight is a natural process common to all.

About 80 million people across the globe suffer from ever-present bad breath; this includes those with dry mouth who are more prone to morning breath, people who take medications that affect their saliva production and those with poor oral hygiene who are more readily prone to pungent breath in the morning.

A Lack of Saliva

Bad breath in the morning is mostly attributed to a lack of saliva. Ask your local dentist in Lone Tree and they will all tell you it’s due to the downtime in saliva production when you sleep, which increases the likelihood of dry mouth. All of this together allows bacteria to grow and produce volatile sulfur compounds (VCS).

VCS is the culprit for the pungent smell. With less saliva to sweep off food particles, bacteria grows and produces these smelly compounds. Snoring also affects the intensity and frequency of morning breath. People who snore typically have dryer mouths, more bacteria, and more bad mornings.

Prevention, Detection and Connections

Though there is no method that ensures you have 100% fresh breath in the morning, you can brush, floss and scrape your tongue before going to bed for a cleaner mouth so the bacteria will have less food and particles in your mouth to munch on.

You can also do the tongue test, where you stand in front of a mirror, open your mouth and try to see the back of your tongue. If your tongue is pink and shiny, you’re fine. But if it is coated with a thick white film, you have bad breath.

Although it only seems a minor inconvenience in the morning, bad morning breath can point to more serious physiological disorders, such as heightened risk for cardiovascular disease and stroke. Oral health is strongly connected to other health conditions, which is why it’s crucial to take proper care of your oral health.