In most cases, the main cause of bad breath in children typically includes dental caries or poor oral and dental hygiene. There are other potential contributors to be considered as well such as taking certain prescribed medications or vitamins, malocclusions, a child’s diet, dry mouth, and large tonsils. However, a recent study from in the September issue of the European Journal of Pediatric Dentistry has been released which links Kids’ bad breath to a specific salivary enzyme called B-galactosidase.
Researchers have discovered that children who had fixed orthodontic devices had higher compounds and production of this enzyme which leads to bad breath rather than those with removable appliances or patients who didn’t undergo any orthodontic treatment at all. This proves how important oral hygiene and diligently cleaning teeth and gums and/or appliances are throughout orthodontic treatment to ensure optimal health and clean breath.
There were a wide variety of methods used to test and detect for bad breath among 50 children who participated in the study from the pediatric dentistry unit of the University of Rome Tor Vergata.
Experts evaluated the following recorded data during each child’s dental visit: levels of oral hygiene, tongue coating scores, quantities of volatile sulfar compounds and SB-g activity, and whether or not the presence of orthodontic devices all played a factor. After the trained operators calculated the numbers, they were able to determine and classify the quality of each child’s breath under different categories. Those children with moderate, strong, or severe bad breath were considered as having halitosis. That resulted in up to 54% of the participants in the study.
Though the statistics show enough to evidence of the claims, the conductors still caution that the information is preliminary since it was performed on a very small number of children, and an extremely small number of children who underwent orthodontic treatment were included in the study.
The findings will still help professional pediatric dentists better understand the etiology of bad breath and how to prevent and effectively treat bad breath among children.
Preventing Bad Breath
Most of the activity of bacteria may occur in the mouth, nose or on the teeth. Allergies, colds and chronic sinusitis that are causing postnasal mucus are the most common factor of bad breath in children.
Good dental hygiene is the best way to prevent bad breath. Your child should brush her teeth and tongue twice a day, as well as floss every day. She could also try using an antibacterial mouthwash. Make sure your child drinks plenty of water and cuts down on sugary drinks and caffeinated drinks like coke and fruit juices.
Improper brushing and flossing of your toddler’s teeth can result in leftover food particles on the tongue, gum line, and between teeth which interact with natural bacteria found in the mouth to create bad breath. Additionally, abscesses, cavities, and tartar buildup can also be a cause of halitosis. Gum disease can also contribute to foul-smelling breath. It’s caused by neglecting oral hygiene. Regular dental cleanings and check-ups are very important when it comes to preventative dental care.
Does your child need to see a pediatric dentist about his/her bad breath?
- Are you worried about your child’s bad breath?
- Your child’s bad breath is extreme even after brushing in the morning
- Your child’s bad breath doesn’t go away after brushing their teeth and tongue twice a day, flossing every day or using an antibacterial mouthwash.
If your child has tooth decay, sensitive teeth or discolored teeth, it’s a good idea to take him to the pediatric dentist immediately. If a medical issue is causing your child’s bad breath, your doctor will discuss other treatment options with you. For example, if your child has an infection, he might need antibiotics.