Lesson 7


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Read the text carefully. Pay attention to words in the bold print
Bad breath is not contagious. Also, chronic bad breath (Halitosis) does not come from the stomach. Certain foods like garlic and spicy foods once absorbed into the body can release odor through the lungs when you breathe. This food odor is transitory and should not be confused with bad breath. Because our sense of smell has the ability to adjust to odor most people with halitosis are not aware of their bad breath.

Nearly all bad breath originates from the mouth, mostly from the surface of thetongue, below the gum line, between the teeth and other hard to reach areas. The mouth is normally inhabited by bacteria and the balance between the different kinds of bacteria determines the quality of your breath. The odor causing bacteria are anaerobic. These anaerobic bacteria inhabit the surface of the tongue by residingbetween the papillae of the tongue which is oxygen deficient. These bacteria cannot be removed completely with a tongue scraper and will recolonize the mouth following antibody therapy. These naturally occurring bacteria feed on proteins and produce volatile sulfur compounds (VSC) as a by-product of metabolism causing bad breath.

Anything that decreases the flow of saliva or stimulates the growth of anaerobic bacteria contributes to bad breath. Saliva irrigates the mouth, stimulatesswallowing and flushing away debris. Morning breath occurs due to decreased salivary flow during sleep. As saliva contains oxygen, the dryer your mouth and the thicker your saliva, the more probable it is you will experience halitosis. This oral problem is more common in mouth breathers and those who snore. Alcohol and even certain mouthwashes containing alcohol can dry the oral tissues causing bacteria to grow. Certain medications for high blood pressure, antihistamines and depression can decrease saliva flow. Dehydration and stress also reduces the flow of saliva.

An important factor in bacterial growth is the pH of the mouth. Bacteria reproduce faster in a more acid environment. Coffee and acidic foods increase acidity.Hormonal changes have even been implicated with bad breath.

Everyone has some level of VSC in their mouth, but it is at a low level that cannot be detected by the nose. When these levels of VSC gets high it becomes detectable as bad breath. Halitosis is rarely associated with certain medical conditions - e.g.: diabetes.

Each year much money is spent on over-the-counter products that do not eliminate bad breath but only mask it for only a few hours. Some even make the problem worse. Alcohol based mouthwash dries out the oral tissue and can worsen the condition.

As the anaerobic bacteria which cause bad breath reside within the tongue itself it is impossible to remove these bacteria completely by brushing or using a tongue scraper alone. It is important to brush and floss to maintain oral health. Maintain regular professional cleanings especially if you suffer from Periodontal Disease (gum disease). It is important to know that most toothpaste contains sodium laryl sulphate which is used as a foaming agent. This is actually a detergent which dries out the mouth even more. As ph is important, the product used needs to have a neutral or slightly basic ph. As the bacteria thrive in an anaerobic climate, theincorporation of an oxygenating complex would be advantageous. The active ingredient is chlorine dioxide. Chlorine dioxide besides neutralizing VSC is also an antimicrobial agent.

acid environment 
– kwaśne środowisko 
adjust – przystosować się 
advantageous – korzystne 
be aware – być świadomym 
by-product – produkt uboczny 
certain – pewny 
chlorine dioxide – dwutlenek chloru 
compound – związek chemiczny 
contain – zawierać 
contagious – zaraźliwy 
dehydration – odwodnienie 
derbis – resztki 
deficient – (tutaj) wykazujący brak 
detect – wykryć 
determine – warunkować, determinować 
factor – czynnik 
foam – pienić 
garlic – czosnek
hormonal – hormonalny
incorporation – włączanie
inhabit – zamieszkiwać
irrigate – nawadniać, przepłukiwać
mouth – usta
mouth breathers – osoby oddychające przez usta
oxygen – tlen
release – uwolnić
reside – rezydować, zamieszkiwać
saliva – ślina
snore – chrapać
spicy – pikantny
sulfur – siarka
swallowing – połykanie
thrive – dobrze się rozwijać
tongue – język
volatile – lotny, zmienny


1. The most common cause of halitosis is diet rich in spicy food and garlic. ___
2. The balance between different kinds of bacteria contributes to breath quality. ___
3. Most of people will experience bed breath in the morning after waking up. ___
4. Use of tongue scrapers, mouth washes and other oral hygiene measures will eliminate bad breath for good. ___
5. Bacteria thrive in acidic environment. ____
6. Anaerobic bacteria live on the surface of the tongue. ___
7. Diabetics are more likely to suffer from halitosis. ___
8. Some of the mouth washes may cause bad breath to intensify. ___

Find antonyms in the text

to be unconscious   to increase 
rehydration   to improve 
permanent   stable 

 to dry out


Match patients questions with doctors answers.

A. Is It true that bad breath comes from stomach?
B. I heard that proper dental hygiene will eliminate bad breath. Is it true?
C. I use mouth wash daily. I still have bad breath. Why?
D. To prevent bad breath should we focus on foods we eat?
E. Can probiotics help in treatment of halitosis?

1. It is only partly true. Brushing and flossing helps eliminate bad breath. Unfortunately, most people do not properly brush their teeth. It takes nearly three minutes to completely brush all tooth surfaces, yet most people spend only 30 to 45 seconds brushing their teeth. Consequently, they consistently miss tooth surfaces where bacteria are allowed to create odorous volatile sulfur compounds. People can brush and floss properly, however, and still be unsuccessful at eliminating bad breath. The problem is that odor causing bacteria often hide deep within the tongue under a protective layer of mucus and proteins. Cleaning the tongue with a tongue cleaner (also called a tongue scraper) can remove this layer of mucus and proteins, exposing bacteria and freshening breath.

2. It is true that temporary bad breath comes from the foods we eat. Many foods like onions and cabbage contain high amounts of sulfur compounds. When these foods are digested the sulfur compounds are absorbed into the blood stream and carried to the lungs. Here the sulfur compounds are exhaled as we breathe causing our breath to smell.
Chronic bad breath, however, is not caused by the foods we eat.

3. No, in fact it is a common misperception. An extremely small percentage of bad breath problems may be due to digestive problems. The overwhelming majority of bad breath arises from the back of the mouth

4. There is no scientific evidence to support the benefits of probiotics in the treatment of halitosis. The use and benefits of probiotics for treating a bad breath condition is very overstated and over simplified. For that reason I do not recommend to use these products.

5.Unfortunately, most conventional mouthwashes only temporarily mask bad breath and are relatively useless at treating bad breath. In fact, most conventional mouthwashes can actually contribute to bad breath formation. This is because mouthwashes contain a high percentage of alcohol which tends to dry out the mouth. Bacteria responsible for creating bad breath grow much better in drier mouths.


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