NeemFirst Blog


halitosis cause, I: bacteria in the mouth

Halitosis from Bacteria
Halitosis is commonly attributed to malodor created by bacteria. Specifically, halitosis is attributed to bacteria in the mouth. Experts attribute between 85-90% of halitosis to sources in the mouth. In the human population, there are 700 possible germs that may decide to set up shop in your mouth, and may or may not produce halitosis.  Of these, only 300 are known to scientists. The average person has 75 – 100 of these germs inhabiting their mouth and contributing to / or fighting halitosis. To date, six types of bacteria (SIX!) have been linked to halitosis, and three of those were absent in fresh breath! 1

Which means that scientists have possibly narrowed the field of halitosis bacteria to three. (Of course, they have 300 more types of bacteria to investigate. But still; it’s good odds. Which also means that those three are some powerful nasty buggers.) 
Why do I write that bacteria also fights halitosis? Because there’s good and bad bacteria, just like the witches of Oz. Similar intrinsic qualities, with totally different results, and often at cross-purposes. In proper proportions, the good bacteria will choke the halitosis causing bacteria out of real estate and favorable conditions. Of course, the opposite is true, too. The halitosis producing bacteria can shove the good bacteria out of the neighborhood just as fast. Your body is a constant war-zone; territorial battles every day. And what you do to assist that battle against halitosis can make a difference. Every day.

1 Bruce Paster, Forsyth Institute in Boston and the University of Michigan School of Dentistry. ABC, “Bad Breath and the Battle of Bacteria,” Gary Gately, 2007.

Tomorrow:  Where Do These Halitosis-Causing Bacteria Live?
Renée

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