WARNING: The Embarrassing Bodies website contains images of an explicit medical nature and nudity in a medical context.

Conditions

Halitosis

Bacteria from bad breath

Is it normal to be scared of the doctor? Vote now! >

There’s no shame in having halitosis (or bad breath, as it is more commonly known). In fact, 95% of us suffer from bad breath at some time in our lives, and one in four adults suffers from bad breath on a regular basis. A quick way to test the potency of your breath is to lick the inside of your wrist with the back of your tongue, let it dry for a few seconds, and then smell. If you subsequently find yourself recoiling in horror from a foul stench, then you should perhaps consider visiting your dental hygienist. Bad breath usually stems from poor oral hygiene (including neglecting the tongue area, which hosts the bacteria that cause bad breath). However, smoking and drinking too much alcohol can also contribute. Sprays, mints and chewing gum will only temporarily mask your bad breath, whereas improving your oral hygiene will ultimately pay-off.

If you’re suffering from any of the conditions featured on this site and want to apply for an onscreen consultation with one of the EB team then you can find more details here >>

Watch the Live from the Clinic interactive case video on halitosis >

Remember that you should always check with a health professional if you have any concerns about your health.

Comments and Questions

The EB doctors have been looking at your comments and have answered some of the common questions below. Remember that it is always best to check with a health professional if you have any concerns about your health.

Comments & Questions are now archived, but if you see anything on the site that worries you, please report it and one of our moderators will look at it as soon as possible.
Please note: Unfortunately Channel 4 cannot respond to individual inquiries. If you have any concerns, you can check out NHS Choices, but ultimately it is always best to check with a health professional.

Since 2008 I've been going to see a dentist and have my teeth cleaned because of excess plaque every 6 months ,I can smell my own bad breath many clients of mine told me I have bad breath which very embarrassing but my Gp and dentist they say I'm okay ,if I'm in meeting or with friends I don't talk much because of this I feel I've got something missing in me I quickly loose girlfriends because of the bb now I feel lonely , I have this heavy disgusting taste in mouth all the time , please someone help ,I've tried all mouth washed under the sun nothing has helped ,I brush and floss my teeth more than 3 times day I'm even moving around with a small tooth brush and tooth paste in my pocket





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

I have had the worst bad breath for years, I feel like I avoid life because of this. Where I was once chatty and popular, now I stay at home closed off. I have been seeking help from the doctors for about three years and with the NHS everything takes time and then there is the matter of good doctors and really shit doctors. Eventually after seeing a Good doctor she made me do a Poo test, and she referred me to the hospital ENT dept. at the ENT the doctor told me Nothing was wrong with my throat and referred me to the stomach doctor. the poo test came back saying I have What is an H. Pylori Infection. another doctor at my surgery (shit doctor) Said it was really common but doesn't need treatment. at the stomach clinic the doctor told me to take the medication of a combination of 3 antibiotics , he also arranged for me to have a breath test. Which I'm due to take next month. I think the antibiotics have help much because my breath is not as bad. I actually sat with friends and had a good laugh at the end of the course. Also I'm looking forward to the breath test because since seeing the stomach doctor he did hint that I may be lactose intolerant. When I see the stomach doctor in again in 3 months he will tell me if I need to have a camera down my throat to see what's going on. My advise to you all is to don't trust one doctors opinion; Anything could be wrong with you and bad breath is a sign of so many diseases and illnesses, from too much sugar intake to cancer.





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

Hello users,please I need an urgent reply,thank you a. 18 now but has had bb since I was 15,I have visited the dentist used different mouth washes,toothpaste,herbal methods to cure my bb to no avail,when I talk family and friends tell me my breath doesn't smell but they inhale deeply,cover their nostrils,use robbs to prevent inhaling the smell, but extended families and friends avoid me,some don't allow me play or carry their babies to avoid breath transfer ,I think ,when I visited the dentist he washed my mouth but told me I had no bb ,so also an ENT doctor I visited recently,an x-ray was conducted and I was told I had opacified maxillary sinus suggestive of sinuses but the ENT doctor told me it wasn't something serious I should wash my mouth with lime and chew orbit chewing gum which I have started everyone thinks I don't take care of my mouth hygiene especially families,I don't go outing,don't talk ,don't make friends,even trusted friends tell me my breath is fine which I know is nothing but a lie,symptoms: 1.bad breath,lasting bad breath which doesn't stop even after brushing 2.jaw pain and swelling 3.I have tonsil stones which were once white but now yellowish and ENT doctors says they aren't swollen 4.post nasal dripping,mucous dripping from throat 5.painful tongue and headaches which can last for 2-3days 6.excessive mucous in mouth when brushing 7.pain in top of nose not always though,just noticed once 8.white coated tongue 9.sometimes I smell the bb from my nostril when covered between my hands not always and its smells irritating and sometimes in my mouth too 10.I get irritated often maybe because of excessive mucous My question can all this symptoms be because of opacified maxillary sinus of both sinus or what,please reply and can amoxicillin treat opacified maxillary sinus?thank you





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

Remove sugar, dairy and gluten from your diet. Put a little salt in a cup of warm water mix and gargle for 2 minutes every night and after you eat. Ask your doctor for an allergy test and if H. Pylori or ulcers can be causing your bad breath. You must stress to the doctors how long this has been affecting you and the consequence. It also helps if you do your research and have what you want written down when you go and see the doctor.

I have bad breath and it is driving me nuts. I have good teeth. I brush three times a day, floss, use interdental brushes, brush my tongue and use non-alcoholic mouthwash, but it's still there, it's borderline ruining my life, so I'm guessing it's something deeper-rooted. My tonsils are fine, no stones and my gums don't bleed whatsoever. I do get excess mucus (I think) and sometimes have a 'metallic' taste in my mouth. Occasionally get heartburn. I have also broken my nose 3 times and air-flow through the nose isn't 100% (possible factor). It's almost comforting to see I'm not on my own though. Hope all you guys get it sorted.





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

people that go to doctor and they say it fine but ur breath stinks check in u have tonsil stones they cause really bad breath cant believe they dont tell people about this





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

well it seems im not alone, i got this ilness 10 years ago at 27 and talk about life ging down hill. i have had 2 operations tried everything still exactly the same. dont know how i havnt topped myself. i get bad post nasal drip and my mouth is constantly covered in slimy coating. awful life, my friends that can bare to be around me i cant bare to be around them im so self consious





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

PLEASE PLEASE READ if your breath smells despite impeccable hygiene, it may be something else wrong that has nothing to do with your mouth! Hi, I am a 22 year old woman and have had the same problem since I was 17. My friends will hang out with me but I try not to see them as often. My family loves me no matter what, and not treated me any differently. I would try reaching out to some family and ask for help if I were you! If you tell them how bad you feel, how this has affected your life, they will help you. And if you have no family, I'm here!! That's one thing I regret doing. I kept this issue to myself as a problem until 2 months ago when I saved money and went to see doctors. I have a breath problem where the smell follows me. I can shower, brush my teeth, etc. and still smell bad, even when I don't talk to anyone. So I started narrowing down a list. Bad breath doesn't just come from your mouth, you can have nasal issues and sinus problems and also stomach issues that result in bad breath. Also many diseases cause bad breath like Diabetes. First, I went to the dentist. Sometimes bad gum health (which can lead to gingivitis) causes bad breath. Tonsil stones could also be the culprit. My dentist said everything was fine. (It doesn't hurt to get a second opinion.) I then went to an otolaryngologist (an ear, nose, and throat doctor) that made me take an MRI to see if I was overproducing mucus and clogging my sinus cavities giving me bad breath. Everything was clear. So now I am currently talking to another ENT doctor who took a microscope to look at my throat and told me I have GERD (acid reflux). It's when stomach acid comes up through your esophagus and causes pain and in some severe cases, bad breath. I told her that I have constantly had a slight burning in my throat for almost 4 years and don't know why. I also told her there is constantly a slimy coating on my throat. She prescribed me medicine and I will check back in 3 weeks. If this doesn't work, I most likely have stomach issues causing the lingering smell of my breath. My stomach always hurt when I eat and I always have gas. So I most likely have a severe stomach issue I have overlooked just passing it off as normal habits. I will start taking my GERD medicine and let you know what comes of it. Please reach out and let's help each other. You are not alone, I know EXACTLY how you feel! All of you. If you need assistance or want help, join experience project dot com, and look up "I have halitosis". If you comment, I will see it and we can talk there. Please don't give up you guys, I have the same issues and have not given up hope.

I have got a very bad breath which I think it is coming from within please help me





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

Hi, I have tried everything as well. Dentists,hygienists,all the mouthwashes, flossing, brushing after meals,etc,etc.. But the cure came from treating to the thyroid gland as it wasn't functioning properly. This was a coincidence as the GP treated me for double vision on my eyes and what a surprise, the could've killed a goat smell has disappeared in just 48 hrs. Ask your GP to do a blood test to check if it is the thyroid function. Funny enough thyroid causes over 300 diseases and worth the check. Good luck!!

Hello. After a bit of research on the net, I found that sometimes a smell like poo can come from your nose and mouth as a result of low acid levels in your tummy when digesting food. I did not validate this with a doctor, but have found that adding a supplement (Hcl) found at health food stores seems to provide some temporary help, though I don't know how long these pills should be taken or if they are healthy. Try do a search on the net about low acid levels in the stomach and see what you can find! It makes sense, the food can sort of rot? In your tummy when acid is low....good place to start with a nutritionist?? Hope this helps some...





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

I m also suffering from bad breath ..i feel very lonely..when ever i talk to someone they immidietly put their hand on their nose its very embarrising fr me . Nt only this the smeel is so strong tht it spread around whereever i go.. please anyone has solution thn reply





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

My mouth tastes disgusting, its always dry and I barely have saliva in my mouth, I have suffered from bad breath my whole life so far. I always brush and floss well and my teeth are healthy. Its really embarrassing and I don't know what to do..





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your answer.


Please don't swear or be rude in your answers, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting answers. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

Questions submitted to the site will be answered by other site users, not by medical professionals, so if you have a medical concern, please book an appointment with your GP.

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

Have you been tested for tmau Hun


Important Notice

The information provided on this website (including any NHS Choices medical information) is for use as information or for educational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical care by a qualified doctor or other qualified healthcare professional. We do not warrant that any information included within this site will meet your health or medical requirements. This Embarrassing Bodies site does not provide any medical or diagnostic services so you should always check with a health professional if you have any concerns about your health.


If you want to embed our videos in your site, read our embedding T&Cs here


More Information

  1. Quick Health Advice: Bad Breath

    In Videos - Dr McKenna gives out information on how to test for bad breath and…

  2. Doctor Responses: Bad Breath

    In Videos - Dr Pixie answers your common questions about curing this annoying c…

  3. Body Check: Tongue

    In Videos - Dr Christian talks about tongue abnormalities and how to check for…

  4. Consultation: Second Adult Circumcision

    In Videos - Dr Jessen examines a patient in need of a new circumcision

  5. James Russell

    Doctor Info - Find out more about James Russell.

  6. Dr Priya Manickavasagar

    Doctor Info - Find out more about Dr Priya.

  7. Consultation: Soreness on the Penis

    In Videos - A patient is examined for soreness around his penis

  8. Doctor Responses: Chlamydia

    In Videos - Dr Christian answers your most frequently asked questions about Chl…

  9. In Detail: Urethral Reconstruction

    In Videos - An in detail look at an operation to reconstruct a man's urethra.

  10. How To Check Your Testicles

    In Videos - Dr Harper's guide to how to self-check your balls against testicula…

  11. Episode 13 - About Face

    In Episodes - In this episode, the doctors catch up with some of the most memorab…

  12. Dr Pixie McKenna

    Doctor Info - Find out more about Dr Pixie.

  13. Dr Christian Jessen

    Doctor Info - Find out more about Dr Christian

  14. Dr Dawn Harper

    Doctor Info - Find out more about Dr Dawn.

  15. Bodies Behaving Badly

    In Episodes - Episode 1 of Embarrassing Teenage Bodies examines conditions includ…


Am I Normal?

Share, explore, vote, watch… Am I Normal? is a bold new Channel 4 project that will redefine what you think of as ‘normal’.

Visit Am I Normal? >