10 Common Causes of Bad Breath

and Some Natural Treatments

By Dr. Denice Moffat

As a doctor, I go ahead and tell the client that they have bad breath and that it will clear if they do the work. I tell them that it will be used as an indicator of health as we go along. I feel it is part of my job as their health care practitioner. As a spouse, friend, relative or person on the street, a bit of tact is involved in telling someone they have bad breath.

Sick bleeding gums—Pack White Oak Bark powder around the gums every night for 30 days. Also increase the amount of Vitamin C in the diet.

Rotten Teeth—This really stinks. It can also be associated with sinus problems. One key in diagnosing this is to ask if they have post nasal drip. Solution: Go to the dentist on a regular basis and get that work done. Floss your teeth and smell the floss. If it is the same smell as the bad breath, see your dentist.

Gastric Reflux—Smells kind of sour. Eating for your blood type should help and reviewing Fit for Life’s proper food combining techniques should also help. Fasting can also be good for this.

Kidney Disease—Smells like a dying animal. Uric acid is building up in the body. Appetite will be poor. Processing of proteins is not happening. After a few months, dead cell toxins affect the eating center of the brain and tell it not to eat, because nausea will occur. The tongue is often gray and pasty. It’s important to see a doctor or naturopath with this as it could be life-threatening.

Yeast—This smells sweetish, but stale. The tongue will usually be coated with a sticky white coat and sometimes “crusties” will build up on the corners of the mouth. If the body is infected with yeast, there will also be a bad body odor and stinky feet. There are lots of products out there that will work if you keep searching. Try some Tom’s Natural Toothpaste with Myrrh in it for your teeth and take about 2 Myrrh Gum capsules every day for a couple of months for the systemic infection. Add lots of oregano to your cooking (they actually make Oregano tablets for yeast infections.)  Brush or scrape your tongue as well as your teeth, and think about doing a water-only fast for 3-5 days.

Ketones—A byproduct of fat breakdown caused from starvation, dieting or diabetes. Is there an increase in thirst? Do you experience light-headedness, fainting, hypoglycemia, or brain fog? Do you forget to eat or skip meals? If so, you might want to have your blood sugar checked.

Ileocecal Valve Syndrome (ICVS)– Chronic ileocecal valve syndrome can cause a smell on the breath like poop coming out of the mouth. Pretty horrible.

Side effects of some foods—It could be that supplement or herb you are taking is causing the halitosis, or some ingredient in a meal like garlic. You can pretty much tell when it’s garlic.

Dog/Puppy or Cat/Kitten Bad Breath—My pathology teacher used to tell us, “Cells are cells. They all act alike.” Treating bad breath in pets is much the same as treating bad breath in humans. One thing I’ve noticed though is that pets get sores on their tongue from Chlamydia or herpes infections more often than humans do. When this happens, the tongue can erode. When this happens, you will see lots of saliva, the pet tries to eat, but can’t, and they start to lose weight. Open their mouth, and check for sores. If it smells like rotten tissue and you see those tell-tale red sores, see your local vet. Feed liquid diets for a while until they recoup and their tongue heals.

If the teeth are red at the gum line, it could be a tooth coming in (pets will be less than 8 months of age) or maybe the teeth need cleaning (you will see lots of tarter built up around the back molars, on the canine teeth, or behind the front teeth.)

Don’t confuse these types of halitosis with the smell of healthy puppy and kitten breath which naturally goes away when the gut flora is established.

With all halitosis, it’s important to determine the cause of the bad breath and rectify it. Halitosis is a symptom of something not working right in the body (except when you eat garlic.) Healthy breath is part of a healthy body. These things can be corrected.  Covering up the symptom with mouthwash or mints is only a temporary fix to a deeper problem.