Really desperate

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Before I begin, this is quite long to read so please bear with me. I realise a lot of this is my own fault so I'm hoping nobody judges me. I have made a lot of mistakes in my life and this appears to be another one. In mid August I met a girl who's breath was really bad however I tried to see past that because  I liked her personality and I'm not somebody who judges people based on    appearance/smells. I drank a lot of alcohol and kissed her and made the mistake of not brushing my teeth that night (not a common thing for me) I noticed a week afterwards I woke up with exactly the same smell she had from her mouth. Not a normal morning breath smell but a decaying sort of smell. It's a very strong smell in the morning. 

I brushed my teeth and flossed and noticed the smell became much worse. Like I'd disturbed something. Now please don't assume I never flossed between my teeth. I did, but not every day (like I do now)...and anyway, when I did floss I never noticed any bad smells at all. 

Since then the smell from my mouth hasn't fully gone away. If I cup my hands and breathe out there's always a lingering of something unpleasant. Eating and drinking sometimes helps cover it up but only temporarily. It is still always there. 

It may or may not be linked to this girl but I'd never had problems with any kind of bad breath up to that point and I know experts say bad breath can't be transferred from one person to another, but other than the poor oral hygiene that I displayed that night, I can't find any other explanation of why I would have the same smell in my mouth now. They say the mouth is the filthiest place in the human body, right? I did take 2 courses of antibiotics in June so I wonder if this didn't help and left my immune system weakened. The only people I have confided in about this has been a dentist, doctor, the girl herself (I approached her sensitively) and my mum. The dentist and doctor both said they couldn't smell anything bad and that they've smelt worse, the girl herself denied she had bad breath (I couldn't believe the denial, because the smell was so strong), and my mum says when I really exhale there's a hint of something bad but it's not strong. My worry is.....not strong.....yet. 

I know this isn't all in my head and it's really getting to me because nobody is taking me seriously. I've lost weight through changing my diet and the doctors give me patronising looks because I'm a bit of a worrier anyway. They see me looking concerned, and always comment on it. I realise it sounds a bit far fetched and if I were reading this I'd probably be a bit skeptical too (Caught bad breath. Really?) but this is honestly how it happened. I didn't think you could catch bad breath too, hence why I kissed the girl. 

My main symptoms are:

1) Weird vile taste/smell at back of throat/tongue when I clear my throat or swallow. I started to notice this more after I washed my mouth out with salt water. The weird taste never went away. 

2) Really bad smell in morning (Not a normal morning breath smell. I can smell an odour bouncing from my pillow as I wake up), and then still lingering through the day, and when I consume anything (weird taste seems to fill mouth. Palate, tongue, back of throat) 

3) If I go up to a mirror, which has become a bad habit for me now (even at work) and breathe on it, I can normally smell something horrible lingering.

4) Notice a weird salty taste in palate and back of throat when I eat sometimes. After a while the taste of my mouth really changed and I actually smelt faeces. Even when I licked my wrist. It smelt like somebody hadn't shut a toilet door. 

5) Occasional burning palate. Although this may be linked to my acid reflux. 

When I first noticed the bad smell I became obsessed about it and needed to find a reason of why this happened and read up online for some help. 

Up to now I've tried: 

1) Seeing the hygienist for a thorough clean of the teeth and gums (made no difference) 

2) Rinsing and gargling with salt water every night (only made the taste at the back of my mouth worse) 

3) Cut out sugar (I think this has helped a bit as I consumed a lot before in tea, chocolate, ice creams, etc. I've found this hard however, because my weight has dropped a lot and I'm only a slim frame. When I do have the odd bar of chocolate I notice the weird taste in the back of my throat and palate gets worse and the smell is really bad in the morning and for days later)

4) Bought strong probiotics at end of August and finished 30 day course in late Sept

5) Bought anti candida tablets on 24 Sept in combination with multivitamins (did notice the horrible smell finally and gradually improving - less strong - and it almost felt like I had normal breath until I consumed sugar, chocolate or alcohol)...was this the probiotics or the anti candida tablets? Or both? One thing I noticed, when I sucked the anti candida tablets it was like the taste in the back of my mouth really got stronger straight away. Like I can really taste/smell it through my palate. Then seemed to improve quite quickly. Within 2 weeks of being on the tablets (by 6 Oct), whilst cutting down sugar, the bad smell and taste had lessened. In my head, because the tablets were reacting with the bad smell I felt I should stick with them for a while. And the packet says to keep taking until you're better. 

6) Changed diet (linked in with number 3) Eating more fruit although bananas and dairy make the taste weird. Cut down on alcohol. Started drinking more water. 

7) Bought probiotic treatment in mid Sept. Lasted 7 days. Noticed no real improvement whilst on it unless the effectiveness was delayed for a week or two (Took anti candida tablets at end of Sept after this) 

8) Bought oral probiotics. Started taking them after I noticed improvements on candida tablets in a hope to fully eradicate whatever is causing this. A weird smell of vomit to them. Not sure if helping or not. Mouth felt less dry though I think. 

9) Bought a tongue scraper and started to scrape my tongue morning and night. Smell sometimes gets worse after scraping tongue. Like I've disturbed something. Maybe I'm doing it too hard? Occasionally I've scraped near the back of the tongue and smelt something on the scraper. Then my breath smelt slightly better. 

10) I noticed I had been eating a lot of eggs prior to all of this (sometimes 2 boiled eggs at a time) so I gave them up at the beginning of Sept. I ate them again recently and noticed my breath was really bad. But isn't that normal with eggs? 

11) I also cut out dairylea spread (as sometimes it would smell funny and occasionally turn green even when in date) but recently introduced that back into my diet. 

12) I felt like my breath was improving and had a pint of beer from the pump at my local bar. The next day my breath smelt bad again in the morning. Very metallic gassy and vile. I have drank bottled beer, and beer from the pump at other bars and not noticed any difference so wondered if it could be a problem with the yeast content at this bar with their beer as I drank there quite a lot before I got this problem? 

13) Bought cheaper probiotics in mid October. Now taking them with multivitamins and anti candida tablets. 

Does anyone know what could be happening with me? I also have acid reflux and people say this causes bad breath sometimes but would it make its way into between my teeth where I flossed? Has anyone had anything similar? The main thing that makes me anxious is not knowing (having a diagnosis) or how to treat it properly. The doctors aren't fussed. Could it be candida overgrowth and do you think this girl may have had it herself and passed it to me through kissing? Is that possible? Was that just a coincidence? Is it bacterial and so by lessening sugar in my diet I starved the bacteria a little bit of growth? Did the probiotics have an effect until I started consuming chocolate again? Will I ever be able to consume chocolate again? It's hard for me to tell because people say sugar will make your breath worse if it's bacterial and fungal so how to distinguish between the two? 

I could be wrong but I suspect from all of the above it might be a candida overgrowth and the candida tablets might have been working in combination with cutting down on sugar and being on probiotics. Until I had a pint of beer at my local. And then had a crazy day on the sugar again. Bars of chocolate. Ice cream. Then I woke up with terrible breath again. I also scraped a bit hard on the tongue cleaner, can that make breath worse? The smell hasn't reduced again since then and that's where I am now. Feeling like I'm never going to fully get rid of this bad taste/smell for the rest of my life, whilst trying to cover it up with all sorts of different products. Of which I'm not sure which one worked temporarily and if it'll ever work again. I can't live on anti candida tablets and probiotics for the rest of my life sad

I'm not even sure if candida can cause the type of bad breath I'm describing. The doctor told me I didn't have candida although he didn't test for it. He just looked in my mouth really quickly and said my tongue would be all white/yellow. Well, it almost is, if I don't brush it. Prior to this happening my diet was quite high on bread, nuts, dairy, sugar and alcohol (not much fruit) and I did take antibiotics twice in one month, like I mentioned before. Never took probiotics at that time. 

Thanks for reading all that, I know it's a lot but I wanted to get as much information across as I possibly could so you have a clearer picture and I can see your thoughts. Sometimes it's better to hear an opinion from somebody looking in as you get clouded in your own thoughts. I'm very sensitive and anxious anyway and this is almost destroying me with worry. I feel so vulnerable, like a little kid lost. I just want to know what it is and what will work for me so I can get on with my life. I wish all of you the very best in improving or curing yourselves, I know this is hard to deal with, I feel like I brought this all on to myself, but let's all try to stay positive and help each other. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. God bless.


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81 Replies

  • Posted

    hey tyler, i can relate but i'm pretty sure you can't catch bad breath! first thing i would do is have your doctor test you for H Pylori the bacteria which causes ulcers. i was told over and over i had reflux and kept getting ulcers til i was treated for pylori. all this time i had acid coming up from my stomach and my breath smelled so bad just like you're describing. i have since fixed that unfortunately i now have sinus issues anf if i don't clear my sinuses daily after a couple of days it smells horrible. as for the possibility of food causing it years ago i had a nutritionist trying to figure out why i had so much trouble with my stomach and she took me off all foods for a month except for white rice steamed with peas. after 10 days i began adding other foods to see which ones did not agree with me. you may want to clear your system and start fresh. i would stop taking candida tablets if i were you.
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    • Posted

      Hi Sinusprob. Thanks for the reply. I think the reason I'm going out of my mind with this is because this girl's breath was very bad and it smelt the same as what I'm getting now. A week after I kissed her. The same smoky rotting smell. Mine is covered if I eat or drink (unless its sugary) but it's always underlying. Hers was always there,  strong, no matter what. If I have sugar in my tea or something sweet the taste in my mouth changes and it smells and gets stronger.

      I just can't see how it's just a coincidence. In my mind, that's bacteria from her mouth that's settled in mine and when I have sugar it's multiplying. I'm so scared about it getting out of control. 

      I have been tested for h pylori. Negative. 

      As an update, I went back to the doctor and he told me he will test me for candida as I was on antibiotics for a long time. One thing I must let you know, I took some really strong antibiotics and was told not to swallow whole as they're corrosive to the esophagus. However I can't swallow tablets whole and they burned as they went down. Could this have made food stick and rot? I ate some garlic a week ago and I can still smell it if I swallow my saliva and then breathe out from my throat. 

      I saw a nutritionist yesterday and after talking with her she thinks I have candida and put me on a special candida diet for 6 weeks with probiotics and aloe vera juice, etc. to help cleanse my digestive system. 

      It's worth trying I guess. I don't know what else to do as something seemed to be working and then I ate too much sugar and I felt it tasted weird in my throat/back of tongue area, like it was feeding something. I could almost smell it through my palate/tonsils, if that makes sense? Maybe what was working was the oral and/or the stomach probiotics. Maybe it was the anti fungal tablets. Maybe a combination of all. 

      It's the not knowing that's making me crazy. I don't know what are the right or wrong things to do....

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    • Posted

      Hey Tyler. Have you ever thought the problem could be damp/mould? Because I am pretty much exactly like you. I'm Hygenic, clean, workout etc. and yet i stil have the same issue and then some. I actually get the same thing about the smell bouncing of the pillow in the morning! accept when I leave the house i'm no longer receiving these odors!

      can I ask? do you get it on your hand?

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  • Posted

    Well Tyler!  

    First of all,  you are worrying too much.  I think you are also taking too many supplements etc..  Try stopping taking everything that you are currently taking.  Then, cut out the alcohol and sweets [chocolate etc..]  Get yourself a new toothbrush - in case the old one has anything on it.  You sound as though you know how to clean your teeth, with decent toothpaste, then floss your teeth, use a scraper and perhaps to begin with, use a mouthwash like Corsodyl but once a day, after you have cleaned your teeth.  If you use the 'Daily' version, it doesn't stain your teeth as much.

    Perhaps you should also inhale some menthol  a few times too.  It will take the smell away.

    And, keep yourself hydrated - with water, not fizzy drinks or alcohol

    The doctor and dentist have told you there is nothing wrong.  You do mention alcohol and chocolate quite a lot, which suggests that they are a problem.

    Good luck!

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    • Posted

      I've read that corsodyl is one of the worst things because it contains alcohol. In fact I was rinsing with that because I had a crown fitted earlier in the year.

      I have a problem with my teeth due to acid reflux so I can't use that mouthwash long term anyway, it's too harsh. I use duraphat toothpaste and mouthwash,  specially prescribed to me. 

      I think the doctor and dentist doesn't see a problem if the room is not filling with a smell. My mum smells something and even said I've got bad breath when I talked to her sometimes. She says it smells like when the cupboard hasnt been cleaned and smells mouldy or someone hasn't cleaned their dentures. I prefer the honesty because I know something doesn't smell right myself, I'm not stupid. I brush and floss and scrape my tongue but this smell appears to be from my throat because I swallow saliva, clear my throat (which tastes strange) and then I breathe into my hands or on a mirror and it's always a horrible smell. 

      I know people who drink and smoke every day who's breath doesn't smell like mine. And it smells just like this girl's breath did. Mine appeared a week after meeting her when I woke up with that smell. 

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    • Posted

      Have the doctors suggested Ranitidine, to sort out the acid reflux?  And what about unsweetened natural yoghurt?  I think they say that Greek yoghurt is the best.

      How are things, have they improved?


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  • Posted

    you may want to ask her if she had a sinus infection or something else going on. not easy but you may get some answers as you seem to be convinced she has caused this problem.
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    • Posted

      She completely denied she had any problem at all with bad breath and said she'd even asked her work colleagues and they said they couldn't smell anything. I believe she was lying about that. Would you ask your work colleagues a question like that? I believe she knows she has a serious bad breath problem but is choosing to ignore it to deal with it. Which isn't actually dealing with it. Which is a shame. 

      I think she just had really terrible oral hygiene. She smoked a lot, didn't drink much. These two things alone cause dry mouth and gives bacteria a great breeding ground. I'm not sure she brushed her teeth much either or cared that much because when I asked her if she'd asked her dentist about the problem she said she hadn't been in a while. 

      Anyway, I am started to see some significant improvements (it's been a long road) after following a strict routine and combination of different products so I'm getting there, slowly but surely. I've resonded to 'probrush' with the list of things I've done and I hope this helps others.

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  • Posted


    This is going to sound harsh but have you considered seeing a counsellor?   The way you talk is incredibly concerning,  you are extremely neurotic. 

    You cannot catch bad breath. Fact. I personally think her bad breath simply made you worry that you had it too and now you are imagining it.  To be honest I am amazed if you are old enough to drink beer should you still be eating Dairy Lea?  Isn't that for babies and toddler's? 

    I'm not disregarding your problem at all, I've had bad breath and tonsil stones most of my life but it's been diagnosed and I know what triggers it. 

    I have studied psychology and I really believe you need to see someone.  Do you suffer from any form of OCD at all?

    I think if you saw your doctor you could maybe get some sessions with a psychotherapist.  

    I really hope you resolve this as it's clearly taken over your life.  

    Good luck. 

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    • Posted

      I expected a response like this because I realise it sounds far fetched but this is honestly how it happened. I have looked online and some people have said this can happene (although very rarely). If you give the bacteria the right environment to breed then they will. 

      I was not even thinking about the girl or bad breath until I woke up with the same smell and whilst lying down I breathed out and realised it was me. This isn't a lie or a tale I am telling. It is the absolute God's honest truth. 

      I wish you would believe me and not think  I'm crazy. My mum even says she smells a bad smell now where she never did before. I noticed an improvement somewhere along the line so something must have been working. The smell gradually improved and  after a while I smelt no bad smell and believed I was making a breakthrough. Perhaps the probiotics were countering the bad bacteria that's now accumulated in my mouth? I stopped the probiotics, once I'd completed the 30 day course, you see. Shortly after that the smell improved almost completely. I was so happy. Then the smell came back once I ate a couple of bars of chocolate. I knew it was coming back because the taste in my back of tongue/throat area changed suddenly. 

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    • Posted

      KJJ, you - like anyone else - are entitled to your opinion. I have an opinion on this as well... and it's that you need to stick your head out of where the sun don't shine mate. There are a whole mess of infections that can be transmitted orally, and any of those could be causing the OPs symptoms. 

      Yes, it's a strange situation, but the real shocker is that you can't even entertain the possibility because "you've studied psychology" and Tyler is clearly "neurotic." Come on mate, dont go around throwing diagnoses all willy nilly because a situation seems strange to you...

      and there's absolutely no reason to be condescending: "isn't that for babies and toddlers?" Where the hell do you get off man.

      Anyway, I think you should go see someone to help you with Arsholmyosis, this clearly what's wrong with you.

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    • Posted

      Hi Tyler23, Thank you for your response but it is moderated by this site. I can not read it.

      I'm still eating healthy and spending lots on a nutritionist. I have to wait 5 days for candida blood test results. I'm desperate bc this odor is severe that everyone around me complains of the odor. I will look up probrush online in case this site blocks your response. Thank you, again.

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    • Posted

      Hi. Anyone that thinks they may have an issue with bad breath needs to check their tonsils. I went years feeling a lot like that always a bad taste, bad smell. I tried everything. Finally I figured out that anaerobic bacteria can take up residence in your tonsils. No amount of antibiotics can clear them permanently. Tonsils may look perfectly fine but microscopic bacteria can be living in there and they emit a gas that smells horrible. If it bothers you this much, consider having them out.
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    • Posted

      Hi Tyler.   Bacteria are definitely the cause of bad breath and for me the jury is still out on whether you can catch these particular bacteria.  From years of looking online for my own problem (tonsil stones and tongue coating - often related) the surface of the tongue plays a big part.  I used to use California Breath products but have just started to use ProFresh as this is much stronger.  I only started using it a couple of days ago so not sure how it compares but it smells quite strong - like a chlorine smell.  It doesn't taste as bad as it smells.  Do you tongue scrape at all?  Thats another really good way to reduce the bacteria in your mouth. I cringe when I read about all these people taking prescription meds to get rid of bad breath, some medicines dry the mouth out which simply makes thinks worse.  So thats this Probrush you are talking about?   
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