After brushing, flossing, scraping the tongue and going to the dentist, bad breath can persist. Where does it come from? According to physician Peter Gott of GoErie, the shape and state of one’s tonsils can radically affect breath.
The tonsils, which lie at the back of the throat, are a part of the body’s immune system, acting as a sieve for bacteria that enter the body through the mouth and nose. Gott writes that healthy tonsils appear pink and fresh.
However, when tonsils become infected, they often swell up and turn yellow or whitish in color. Swollen tonsils may begin to collect food matter and dead microorganisms in their folds, which ultimately may become tonsil stones.
Tonsils that retain a folded, swollen shape are called chronic cryptic tonsils. They can easily generate a steady number of smelly tonsil stones, which can require repeated hacking or hissing to dislodge.
Short of a tonsillectomy, treatments for tonsil stones include gargling with warm water to remove food particles lodged in cryptic tonsils, as well as using specialty breath fresheners to hydrate the mouth and prevent the accumulation of odor-causing bacteria.