Halitosis otherwise known as "bad breath" may be described as an unpleasant odour coming from the breath that is exhaled through the mouth or nose.
Bad breath is a social taboo and as a result sometimes psychological or social problems can develop for example social anxiety, depression, reluctance to speak and being withdrawn.
Most of the time the unpleasant odor may be caused by conditions inside the mouth example:
Odors released by bacteria present below the gum line and on the back of the tongue.
Sores inside the mouth
About 10% of the time halitosis may be caused by conditions outside of the mouth for example.
Disorders in the nasal cavity
Other times halitosis may be a symptom of a serious underlying medical condition for example:
Kidney disease or failure
Halitosis can be categorized by the character of the odour into three groups.
1. Sulfurous or fecal
Commonly caused by volatile sulfur compounds most notably methyl mercapton,hydrogen sulfide,and dimethyl sulfide.
2. Fruity or Sweet