Halitosis, or what is commonly known as bad breath, is a common condition in children. It is most especially common among older children and adolescents. There are many causes but more often than not, bad breath in children is caused by bacterial activity in the mouth, the back of the throat, nose, and teeth.
The glands in your nose and throat normally produce one to two quarts of mucus a day. The mucus helps moisten and clean the nasal membranes in addition to humidifying the air, trapping and clearing inhaled foreign matter, and fighting infection.
Normally, the mucus is just swallowed, often unconsciously. Sometimes, however, you get that feeling of dripping from the back of your nose. This is what is called postnasal drip, caused by either excessive or thick secretions or throat muscle and swallowing disorders.
One of the most common causes of bad breath in children is postnasal drip. The excessive secretions leading to postnasal drip disorders may be due to allergies, recurrent colds, or chronic sinus infections.
Dentition is the process of growing new teeth, something that obviously occurs most often in children. Now, one of the number one causes of bad breath in children is a problem that occurs during dentition. Improper oral hygiene could lead to cavities, which can cause bad breath in children. It may also cause inflamed gums or gingivitis. Food particles may get trapped in the gaps between teeth, allowing volatile sulfur-producing bacteria to set in.
Breathing through the Mouth
Congestion of the nose due to allergies or enlarged adenoids could lead a child to breathe through his mouth instead of his nose. Some parents are not aware but this actually leads to bad breath in children. Breathing through the mouth could cause the mouth to become dry. The saliva, which has a disinfectant effect against mouth bacteria, cannot do its job properly and wash away food particles from the mouth.
There are other conditions that may lead to dry mouth causing bad breath in children. Taking certain medications may cause dry mouth.
Foreign Body in the Nasal Passages
Children love to stick things to where they’re not supposed to. Thus, you have a child who has somehow gotten it in mind to stick a piece of marble in his nose. Besides the obvious harm this could do to the child, this kind of object blocking the nasal passages could also cause bad breath in children.
You will typically recognize that there is a problem if you notice a green discharge from one nostril. Usually, most infections would cause drainage from both sides of the nose. A discharge from only one nostril means there is something inside the other passage, blocking drainage.