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Poor dental care that leads to the growth of bacteria is often thought of as a cause of bad breath, but new research has found that the problem may go even deeper than that.
The study, published in the journal, Applied and Environmental Microbiology, found that all mouths have the odor-causing bacteria. People with bad breath actually have an imbalance of healthy and unhealthy mouth bacteria which leads to an overgrowth of the germs that cause bad breath.
In order to completely cure bad breath, researchers said that treatments may have to adjust the entire microbiological ecosystem of the mouth, rather than just try to kill the specific bacteria responsible for bad breath.
"The results of this investigation clearly demonstrate that oral malodor is a symptom based on the characteristic occupation of indigenous oral bacterial populations, rather than solely on bacterial overgrowth due to poor oral hygiene," say the researchers.
Bad breath is one of the most common mouth disorders, and requires special treatments many times, according to the American Dental Association.
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