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Stress may worsen bad breath

By – Bad Breath Expert
Posted: August 12, 2011, Updated: February 3, 2014
SUMMARY: Do you have bad breath because you're stressed, or do you get stressed because you have bad breath? Regardless of which came first, it's usually advisable to consider getting a specialty breath freshener or an oral care probiotics kit to knock out halitosis as soon as possible.

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Do you have bad breath because you're stressed, or do you get stressed because you have bad breath? Regardless of which came first, it's usually advisable to consider getting a specialty breath freshener or an oral care probiotics kit to knock out halitosis as soon as possible.

The magazine Shukan Pureiboi, or Weekly Playboy, recently reported that oral odor is becoming more widespread in Japan due largely to stress. The news site Japan Today, translating the article for an English-speaking audience, noted that the connection is sound, adding that tension tends to cause halitosis by drying up one's saliva.

Think about it. If you are nervous about a big meeting or run ragged at work, your mouth can get dry and cottony. Without saliva to lubricate your tongue and palate, bacteria begin growing out of control, releasing smelly molecules called volatile sulfur compounds (VSCs) in the process.

How much saliva should a mouth make in a day? One-and-a-half liters, Dr. Ichiro Saito told Weekly Playboy, though someone who is stressed from the rat race can produce far less.

A study in the journal Stress confirmed as much - literally, with rats. Researchers found that laboratory rodents subjected to intense stress began producing more VSCs three hours afterward.