Halitosis the third most common dental complaint in Brunei

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A senior dentist has revealed that halitosis is the third most common dental complaint in Brunei, after gum disease and tooth decay.

Halitosis, often referred to as ‘bad breath’ is a common cause of social awkwardness and is not widely considered as a dental health problem by patients; however, it is an issue which is taken seriously be dentists because it can be a symptom of more serious dental health conditions, as well as being an unpleasant problem for the patient.

Speaking at the Brunei Dental Convention, Dr Ronald Chia Ming said that halitosis was a serious problem which needed to be handled carefully by dental professionals. Dr Chia Ming claimed that many dentists do not have sufficient training to deal with halitosis effectively and as a result, the problem was becoming increasingly common.

Bad breath is caused by the development of a film on the tongue, which contains protein that can support and nourish bacteria; the bacteria break the protein film down and the waste products of this process cause the unpleasant odour. Bad breath is also affected by the amount of saliva in the mouth; if there is a lack of saliva, more bacteria will be present, which will contribute to halitosis. The amount of saliva can be affected by smoking, diet and certain types of medication.

Dr Chia Ming is keen for dentists to receive better training in the clinical management of halitosis and is also encouraging affected patients to visit their dentist for treatment.



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