Do you have problems with bad breath or halitosis? Do you know what causes that embarrassing odor? There are several reasons for the presence of bad breath. Believe it or not it is possible for some people to have bad breath and they are not even aware of it. However, if you are concerned about this unpleasant condition, then see your dental care provider. Why do garlic and onions have such an offensive after effect? Certain foods contain volatile oils and once digested they enter your blood stream and then they are transferred to your lungs. Your lungs will emit this pungent odor until the food is eliminated from your body. Brushing and mouth rinses can only cover the odor temporarily. Order that next cheeseburger, but hold the onions. Crash diets and fasting also cause bad breath as the breakdown of chemicals takes place. When you fail to brush and floss your teeth properly particles of food are left behind to collect bacteria. Food particles will actually rot as they collect between your teeth and around your tongue and gums. It's the bacteria growth that is actually causing the foul odor. It is very unappealing when you think about it in this light. What medications are you taking? Several medications play an active part in producing unpleasant breath. It would be a good idea to make a list of foods you eat and medications you use if you are experiencing constant bad breath. Take this list to your dental care professional so he/she can determine what the cause might be. Have you ever experienced dry mouth? Saliva works to moisten and cleanse your mouth to help remove food particles. When saliva decreases dead cells collect and decompose in your mouth causing bad breath. Do you sleep with your mouth open? I am sure you have experienced morning breath because dry mouth naturally occurs while you sleep. Do you happen to use tobacco products or drink alcoholic beverages? Not only are these a danger to your health they cause offensive breath odor as well. Are you suffering from any medical disorder? Respiratory infection, sinus infection, bronchitis, postnasal drip, gastrointestinal problems, diabetes, and liver or kidney conditions are all commonly associated with bad breath. Finally, gum disease (gingivitis or periodontitis) is usually the underlying issue concerning chronic bad breath. If you suffer from canker sores the may cause foul odor especially if they are associated with gum disease. The best thing for you to do is see your dentist and get his/her advice on what is causing your bad breath. If it is not related to dental health they will most likely suggest that you see your family physician.