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Dr. Andrew Rynne
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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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What causes bitter taste in the mouth and bad breath?

Answered by
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Dr. Riddhi Shah

ENT Specialist

Practicing since :2008

Answered : 518 Questions

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Posted on Thu, 25 May 2017 in Ear, Nose and Throat Problems
Question: I feel funny unpleasant feeling in my mouth, throat. I lost sense of smell abount 6 months ago due to severe cold. Now I am not able to taste food, eg honey aslo tastes bitter in my mouth. I smell extremely foul smell after I wake up from sleep.
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Answered by Dr. Riddhi Shah 50 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Please see the answer

Detailed Answer:
Hi,thank you for posting your query on health care magic.
I have gone through your query and can understand your concern.

Smell and taste are related with one another.If smell is reduced ,then the taste sensation will also get affected.
You may try with Nasal Steroid spray like Mometasone:it might help in regaining the smell.

For the foul smelling in the throat,there can be following reasons:

Food. The breakdown of food particles in and around your teeth can increase bacteria and cause a foul odor. Eating certain foods, such as onions, garlic and spices, also can cause bad breath. After you digest these foods, they enter your bloodstream, are carried to your lungs and affect your breath.

Tobacco products. Smoking causes its own unpleasant mouth odor. Smokers and oral tobacco users are also more likely to have gum disease, another source of bad breath.

Poor dental hygiene. If you don't brush and floss daily, food particles remain in your mouth, causing bad breath. A colorless, sticky film of bacteria (plaque) forms on your teeth. If not brushed away, plaque can irritate your gums and eventually form plaque-filled pockets between your teeth and gums (periodontitis). Your tongue also can trap bacteria that produce odors. Dentures that aren't cleaned regularly or don't fit properly can harbor odor-causing bacteria and food particles.

Dry mouth. Saliva helps cleanse your mouth, removing particles that cause bad odors. A condition called dry mouth can contribute to bad breath because production of saliva is decreased. Dry mouth naturally occurs during sleep, leading to "morning breath," and it worsens if you sleep with your mouth open. Chronic dry mouth can be caused by a problem with your salivary glands .

Medications. Some medications can indirectly produce bad breath by contributing to dry mouth. Others can be broken down in the body to release chemicals that can be carried on your breath.

Infections in your mouth. Bad breath can be caused as a result of tooth decay, gum disease or mouth sores.

Other mouth, nose and throat conditions. Bad breath can occasionally stem from small stones that form in the tonsils and are covered with bacteria that produce odor. Infections or chronic inflammation in the nose, sinuses or throat, which can contribute to postnasal drip, also can cause bad breath.

Chronic reflux of stomach acids (gastroesophageal reflux disease, or GERD) can be associated with bad breath.

Please check whether any of the following factors might be contributing foul smell breath in you.

To reduce or prevent bad breath:

Brush using a fluoride-containing toothpaste at least twice a day, especially after meals. Toothpaste with antibacterial properties has been shown to reduce bad breath odors.

Floss at least once a day. Proper flossing removes food particles and plaque from between your teeth, helping to control bad breath.

Brush your tongue. Your tongue harbors bacteria, so carefully brushing it may reduce odors.
Clean dentures or dental appliances. If you wear a bridge or a denture, clean it thoroughly at least once a day or as directed by your dentist.

Avoid dry mouth. To keep your mouth moist, avoid tobacco and drink plenty of water — not coffee, soft drinks or alcohol, which can lead to a drier mouth. Chew gum or suck on candy (preferably sugarless) to stimulate saliva.

Adjust your diet. Avoid foods such as onions and garlic that can cause bad breath. Eating a lot of sugary foods is also linked with bad breath.

Regularly get a new toothbrush. Change your toothbrush when it becomes frayed, about every three to four months, and choose a soft-bristled toothbrush.

Consult a dentist for dental check up.

Hope this answers your question.I would be happy to answer you in case of any follow-up questions.Take care.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Kampana
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