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Alcohol Causes Bad Breath

Posted by on April 7, 2016 in Dental Tips, Sandgate | Comments Off on Alcohol Causes Bad Breath

Alcohol Causes Bad Breath But Not For The Reasons You Think


Most people are familiar with ‘hangover halitosis’, the seriously nasty alcohol breath that occurs after a prolonged session on the booze. But even if you’re not a big binge drinker, alcohol could be contributing to your bad breath problem.

You probably associate alcohol breath with either a hangover or the short term lingering effects of beer or wine breath, but it’s far more insidious than this. Alcohol and other lifestyle choices cause bad breath by promoting the growth of bacteria in your mouth that produce some decidedly unpleasant aromas.


Bacterial balance is the key to fresh breath

By far the biggest contributor to the daily battle with bad breath is the volatile sulphur compounds produced by certain bacteria in your mouth. The levels of these bacteria determine the degree of bad breath you experience.  Volatile sulphur compounds are the same substances responsible for the smell of rotten eggs.

These halitosis-inducing bacteria should be kept in check by both good bacteria and substances in your saliva. Some people are lucky and are born with naturally high levels of good bacteria, which helps to keep bad breath in check.  But your diet and lifestyle go a long way to influencing the type of bacteria that make their home in your mouth.


Alcohol promotes bad bacteria in your mouth

Alcohol dries out and dehydrates your mouth, allowing bad breath bacteria to thrive. These bacteria LOVE a dry mouth without any saliva to suppress their furtive antisocial activities.  Even certain alcohol-containing mouthwashes can have the same effect as drinking wine, beer and spirits and contribute to alcohol breath

If you’re drinking alcohol on a regular basis it will change the balance of bacteria in your mouth no matter how diligent you are with brushing and flossing.


Other foods and drinks that upset the bacterial balance

Other foods and drinks that create bad breath by encouraging the growth of bacteria include:

·         Caffeine in energy drinks, coffee and tea;

·         Sugar;

·         Acidic foods such as coffee, tomato juice, citrus, pickles, tomato sauce or soft drinks; and

·         Dense protein foods such as cheese, meat, eggs, protein powder, protein bars and fish.


Ways to protect your mouth from alcohol breath

Drinking plenty of water to keep your mouth and body as hydrated as possible can help to offset the drying effects of alcohol. Aim to drink a glass or two of water between each alcoholic drink to help minimise alcohol breath.  Make sure it’s just plain old pure water as sugary soft drinks will only make your bad breath worse.

Other steps you can take to help keep bad bacteria in check include:

·         Brushing your tongue morning and evening to remove the layer of bacteria that builds up on it.

·         Oral probiotics or an antibacterial mouthwash. Speak to dentist who specialises in bad breath about the best one for you

·         Brushing your teeth and flossing daily.


Find out how many bad bacteria live in your mouth

Speak to Brisbane’s bad breath specialists to find out how you can still enjoy the odd glass of wine or a beer without alcohol breath ruining your social life. Call Robert Duhig Dental today on 07 3269 2443 to book an appointment and discover a scientific approach to bad breath treatment.


Alcohol breath can be a problem, even if you’re not a big drinker. Get expert advice today from Robert Duhig Dental.