There is a myriad of things that can cause strange or pungent baby breath smells. Some can be remedied easily at home, and some are indicators of more serious issues that may call for medical attention:
- Ingesting smelly foods: This is usually the most common cause. If your child enjoys foods that include pungent ingredients like garlic and onions, they can affect his or her breath as they work through the digestive system.
- Poor hygiene: The mouth is full of normal bacteria, and a baby’s mouth is no different. The bacteria interact with leftover food particles on the tongue, at the gum line and between teeth, or around the tonsils at the back of your child’s throat. These bacteria interactions can cause bad breath, especially if the food particles are left in the mouth for long periods of time.
- Dry mouth: If your baby is breathing through its mouth, perhaps due to a stuffy nose or just being agape in baby wonderment, mouth bacteria is very likely to build up and grow.
- Abscesses, cavities, and tartar build-up: Any of these issues can cause bad breath in your infant’s mouth, although gingivitis is usually only found in adults.
- Foreign objects:Toddlers are notorious for putting small, strange, foreign objects in their mouths, whether they be edible or not. Any object that your child puts in their mouth can cause him or her to have bad breath.
- Some baby bad breath instances may be due to a medical condition:
- Allergy or cold:Extra mucus allows bacteria to grow, causing baby bad breath.
- Sinus infection: This occurs when fluid builds up in the nasal passages and drips down the back of the throat.
- Lack of Dental Care: Even if your baby only has few teeth, poor oral care can lead to tooth decay. This can easily be ruled out by a trip to the dentist.
- Large tonsils: Food or bacteria can build up in the pits of large tonsils and cause a foul smell.
- GERD (Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease): This is when stomach acids bubble up and cause an acidic scent.
Bad baby breath happens, so don’t take it as an immediate cause for alarm, and there’s plenty you can do to make those smells go away. In many cases, it can be remedied with simple improvements in oral care and at-home remedies. Such remedies include:
– Gently wiping your baby’s tongue and gums with a soft toothbrush after each feeding and before they go to bed. Using baby toothpaste is also a good option.
– Making sure your baby’s hands are frequently washed, as well as their pacifier and toys. This controls any dried mucus bacteria buildup.
Of course, if bad breath symptoms continue, it’s recommended to take your child to a doctor.
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