“Pee-ew!” Have you noticed that your child’s breath stinks? Like, really stinks – even after brushing? It’s common for children to have bad breath, known medically as halitosis. If your child has halitosis, there could be a number of different causes.

Causes of Bad Breath in Children

If your child is still suffering from bad breath after brushing, there is more than likely an underlying condition that is causing it. According to the experts at Charlotte Pediatric Dentistry, these possible causes include:

Dry Mouth

When your kids are active and don’t drink an adequate amount of water, they could develop bad breath. Without enough water, the mouth doesn’t produce saliva. With no saliva, there’s nothing to wash away odor-causing bacteria. To prevent this, ensure your child is staying properly hydrated while they are out and about or playing. Another solution to dry mouth is a sugar-free gum, which will also help produce saliva.

Sinus infection

When your child has a sinus infection, fluid collects in the nasal passages and throat, leaving bacteria to grow. This bacteria is what can lead to smelly breath. If your child has a sore throat or nasal congestion in conjunction with their bad breath, consider making an appointment with your child’s pediatrician to receive antibiotics.


Inflamed tonsils can be the cause of your child’s stinky breath. When tonsils are infected, they become red, swollen, and have white spots. Infected tonsils will also have an odor that can seem like bad breath. Have your child open wide and take a look down their throat with a flashlight to check their tonsils. Healthy tonsils will be pink and spot-free. If you suspect tonsillitis is the cause, call your child’s doctor immediately.

Tooth decay

The main cause of bad breath in children include poor oral and dental hygiene, as well as tooth decay. If your child is developing a cavity, the bacteria will cause bad breath. Remember, brush twice a day, floss in between teeth to remove food particles, and use mouthwash.

If your child is suffering from chronic halitosis, then definitely make a plan to visit your local Charlotte pediatric dentist for a consultation.