• Sandygate Dental Practice

White tongue and bad breath - what’s causing them?

Are you worried about bad breath? If so not to worry, we have lots of patients who have on and off issues with bad breath. What we’ve come to learn through our years of experience at Sandygate Dental is that bad breath in some cases also comes with a white tongue. So why do they come together and what is it a sign of? And is it a chicken and egg situation?

The causes of bad breath


There are certain medical conditions like sinusitis that can leave a film on the tongue which can cause bad breath. Certain foods can also be the reason for less than sweet breath. There are certain food groups such as onions and garlic that are known to leave a lasting strong taste and smell in our mouths.


Of course smoking is a really big contender when it comes to the causes of bad breath, the tobacco leaves a smell both on the tongue and hands. This habit can also contribute to a dry mouth but is not always the cause of this particular condition. Saliva is actually the thing that helps fight bad breath. Saliva washes down the bacteria from the surface of your tongue and teeth. So, a lack of saliva can really stop your mouth from removing food debris.


Another thing to be wary of is bad oral hygiene. To keep it very simple, if you don’t take care of your oral hygiene then food particles will remain in your mouth and begin to rot and this will of course let off serious odour. If you are unsure of what a good oral hygiene routine is, speak with our dentist in Sheffield next time you visit us at the practice.


White tongue


The reason for a white tongue is highly linked to the reasons for bad breath. It’s usually to do with bacteria and debris and dead cells becoming trapped in between the papillae which is what we call the surface area of the tongue. Papillae have the capacity to grow and swell and even become inflamed which is why you might begin to see white patches - if you would like to understand this more talk with our dentist in Sheffield.


What you can do to improve your bad breath


Drink lots of water. This might sound silly, but it’s amazing what a difference keeping yourself hydrated can do to stop you from experiencing bad breath.

Avoid certain foods. This of course can be easier said than done as we all love yummy garlic bread from time to time.


Keep on top of oral hygiene. Brushing your teeth twice daily and using floss is standard best practice when it comes to oral hygiene. If you’re unsure of how to use floss correctly, speak to our dentist in Sheffield.


Tongue scraping isn’t for everyone, but if you are experiencing issues with a white tongue then this practice could be really beneficial for you.


Attend regular check-ups. We are ready to welcome all our patients for their next check-up and pride ourselves on being a practice that encourages prevention over cure.


So when it comes to bad breath and white tongues, it’s pretty clear the two are linked and that one can’t always be fixed without the other.