Why Does My Breath Smell Bad When Wearing a Mask?

March 15, 2021

Wearing masks is the new normal, and you may have noticed a change in your breath since. You can hear this being commonly referred to as “mask breath,” but in all honesty, your mask isn’t to blame for this smell. Think of wearing a mask as constantly cupping your mouth to smell your own breath.

Bad breath is properly referred to as halitosis and is usually a result of decreased saliva production. There are plenty of reasons you could be experiencing bad breath, but we made a list of the most common reasons.

Bad Breath Culprits

  1. Woman cupping her mouthDiet is usually a large contributor when it comes to bad breath. Foods like garlic, coffee, fish, eggs, and onion are all known to leave an odor behind. Along with these foods, sweets commonly leave an odor on your breath. According to CNN, bacteria feed off of sugar and this results in a foul odor. This is known to often happen with gummies and caramels. If you have a sweet tooth, your best option is to go with plain chocolate!
  2. When food gets trapped between your teeth and gums, bacteria will start to break down, leaving a stink behind. If you’re experiencing this, try brushing your teeth and tongue three times a day, flossing, and using a fluoride mouthwash.
  3. When you wear a mask, it stops you from drinking. If you’re consuming less water than you once did, it can result in bad breath. Drinking water regularly allows for bacteria to be washed away before they multiply and cause your breath to smell.
  4. Mouth breathers have a bad reputation and one of the reasons to blame is bad breath. At night, saliva production is decreased and mouth breathing or snoring can further dry out the mouth,  making it even worse than the normal “morning breath.” The best way to combat the mouth breathing stench is to drink a lot of water and continue with a normal healthy dental hygiene routine.
  5. Underlying medical conditions can lead to bad breath. If you often experience acid reflux or gastroesophageal reflux disease, the acid easily creates bad breath. Untreated GERD can develop into serious illness. Bad breath can also be an early sign of an underlying disease that doesn’t have any noticeable symptoms.

Kiss Bad Breath Goodbye

If you’ve noticed your “mask breath,” make an appointment with your dentist. Your dentist will be able to help determine the reason for your bad breath and recommend some personalized solutions. At Panorama Dental, we are following all COVID precautions to keep our staff and patients safe. Contact us today.