30 answers

Toddler with Smelly Breath

My daughter is 17 months old and had breath that could peel the paint off of walls! It's awful! It smells like morning breath ALL day long. We brush her teeth, gums and tongue two times a day, sometimes 3 times. I use the toddler toothpaste with out the flouride. She drinks lots of water throughout the day, 3 cups of milk (breakfast, lunch, dinner) and 1/2 cup of juice a day. The food she's eating is not overly smelly or anything. She is cutting teeth, but I don't know if that would cause the smelly breath. She's not sick or anything else. She has a check up in a few weeks and I'm just wondering if this is something I should be concerned about.

****I should mention that she doesn't have any symptoms of GERD, reflux or milk allergy.********

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Featured Answers

This sounds like a stomach problem. I have been bouting this since childhood. I have been told it has to do with the digestion of foods.

1 mom found this helpful

She might have something stuck in her nose. Has she ever stuck anything in her nose that you know of? a friend of mine's son had the same problem and they found out that he had a tiny peice of styrofoam in his nose. I hope thats not the case but I hope it helps.

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Hi S.,

When my daughter was aroun 9 months she developed very bad breath and she was diagnosed with GERD. Prevacid fixed it and taking her off dairy for a year.
Amy

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More Answers

Ditto to D Q 's advice, I taught my son how to spit the toothpaste out too, and bought the minty stuff, and kids mouthwash. That really worked! good luck!!

1 mom found this helpful

The cutting teeth could have something to do with it. Has she had any issues with refulx? There is a condition called GERD that is related to reflux and one of the typical symptoms is really bad breath.
Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

digestive problems are a big cause of bad breath--acid reflux as one mom said, constipation can be a cause. Food allergies are another problem--which of course could cause the reflux and bowel problems. dairy products are a big allergen--you said 3 cups of milk a day--that could be the problem. Try giving your daughter probiotics--most of us need them--esp if she has been on anti-biotics or was bottle fed.

1 mom found this helpful

I had the same problem with my kids. I stopped using the toddler toothpaste. I taught my kids how to spit out their toothpaste at an early age and then switched them to regular minty toothpaste. It's the only thing that works. I don't even use the berry or bubble gum flavored because you will have the same results as the toddler toothpaste.

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Only other thing I know of is veggie burgers. My daughter used to eat these frequently and that was a MAJOR side effect!!

1 mom found this helpful

My daughter was the same way. Her pediatrician said once we started using the toothpaste w/ fluoride it would be better. It was. I think at 17 months they are old enough. Check the label because I can't remember.

1 mom found this helpful

Hi S.... My son had the same problem for a few months. I just attributed it to allergies because he always had alot of drainage. Come to find out his tonsils were HUGE and his right tonsil was embedded into his neck muscles. He had his tonsils and adenoids removed-- problem solved! Even if her tonsils don't look big by looking into her throat, they could be hiding. Have her ped check her tonsils and/or refer her to a good ENT in your area.

1 mom found this helpful

You should talk to a good homeopath. That is part of the "chronic" condition of the child. It doesn't mean the child is unhealthy, but rather the body is throwing off a symptom to let you know something is going to happen in the future.

Good Luck!

1 mom found this helpful

My DD had / has similar issues and her ped told us it was from cutting teeth. Something to do with the constant production of saliva that cutting teeth causes, their putting their hands in their mouth to relief the pain, etc etc. See how your daughter's breath is when she isn't cutting teeth (my DD smell went away then). I would definitely talk with her doc about it just to be sure it isn't anything else. Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

S.,

I don't think this is something to be too concerned about but definitely bring it up at the checkup and I would also ask your peds. dentist next time you are in for a checkup. She might have a little pocket behind the tonsils where the food is hiding or getting stuck...

P.W.

1 mom found this helpful

Hi S.,
My daughter will be 5 in January and is going through the bad breath thing too. She has been for a while now.
She had Acid Reflux as an infant...not sure if that has anything to do with it or not. She's pretty much outgrown that.
She does however drink A-LOT of milk. I'm going to try to cut her back on that and see if it helps.
She did have her adnoids removed 1.5 years ago (her surgeon said she had 95% blockage from her adnoids) she doesn't snore anymore at night. :)
She does tend to lick her upper lip like her nose is running when it's really not. She will get all chapped and looks like she's had Kool-Aid to drink. The doctor put her on Zyrtec and it helps.

I even help her brush her teeth to make sure she does a good job but she always has bad breath.
She does go to the dentist regularly and they never say anything. Her next cleaning is in August. Maybe, I'll ask them about it to see what they say.

I'll let you know if it gets better when I cut her back on her milk.
T.

1 mom found this helpful

my son is 6 yrs. old and still has that going on. we buy the soft peppermint sticks and after dinner mints & give him those, they help for a while. his dentist says some kids are like that & there's not a whole lot you can do. good luck & God bless.

1 mom found this helpful

Hi - Both of my kids have the same thing. I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes at age 16 and weighed about 80 lbs. (Yes type 2, not 1). It is pretty rare, but smelly breath is a major cue to how your blood sugar is doing. I agree that you should get the nose, throat, and teeth thing checked out, but if you still can't find a cause you might want to mention to your doctor that you'd like to get her checked. Keep in mind that they do not typically check until they are 5 and she would show other sysmptoms (excessie thirst, very smelly urine, very tired multiple times a day). Just something to keep on your radar. Don't get too excited though - it really is probably nothing and she will grow out of it.

1 mom found this helpful

If her breath smells really sour maybe the flora in her tummy are off balance. I would try feeding her kids yogurt (I always recommend organic but whatever you choose)...she can get some healthy bacteria and it may help with the stinky breath.

Good luck!

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My dentist said that my oldest bad breath was mostly caused from nasal drainage. As you sleep, your nose naturally drains. It wouldn't hurt to mention it to your doctor. You might even call your dentist for recommendations.

1 mom found this helpful

This sounds like a stomach problem. I have been bouting this since childhood. I have been told it has to do with the digestion of foods.

1 mom found this helpful

Naturally Healthy Babies & Children by ROMM & Encyclopedia of Natural Health & Healing for Children by Weber

When people have bad breath, it's because they have an abundance of certain chemicals or toxins. PLENTY OF FIBER. Fiber helps remove the toxins from the colon that result in bad breath.

Plenty of vitamin C foods.

Make sure there are plenty of foods that contain ZINC which has an antibacterial effect, which neutralizes sulfer compounds, a common cause of mouth odor.

1 mom found this helpful

I heard this on the news once but don't know how reliable it is...
A dad was saying the same thing about his daughter, she had horrible breath. Turns out she had stuck some fabric from her blankie up her nose and it was causing a sinus infection from the mold that was starting to grow. GROSSSSS. So it could be anything and if it has been going on for more than a few days I would have it checked out.

1 mom found this helpful

I am not a medical professional but when I worked at a day care I took a class where we were told that very sour breath could be a sign of diabetes. Again, not a med professional so take this with a grain of salt. Just something to ask the doctor about. It could just be bad breath or the toothpaste. Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

We had the same problem with our 6 yr old. Turns out he had food lodged in the back of his throat. ( for a few months, it was awful) The doc suggested gargeling w salt water 2x a day after a week or 2 it did the trick. Check with your ped to see what you can do because she is so young gargeling may not work

1 mom found this helpful

Does she have nasal drainage? Does she have a runny nose often? Does she have any allergies affecting her nasal passages?
Perhaps she's developing a sour stomach from drainage. This can cause very foul breath. Try using an over-the-counter medicine for allergies such as loratadine, Claritin or Benedryl for children.

1 mom found this helpful

This is what my acupuncturist thought might be going on: Bad breath is usually a sign of stomach heat. Milk and dairy products are making the problem worse, she needs to eat only a cooling diet of veggies, fruit and whole grains. Very little animal protein, no peanut butter (roasting adds heat), no sugar, plain yogurt can help but she mught not like the taste, maybe puree some banana in it to sweeten it up. Peppermint tea and peppermint oil on her belly will cool things off as well. The teething process is definately exacerbating the problem but you still should be able to improve things.
--Hope that info. may help out.

1 mom found this helpful

She may have stuck something up her nose and it could be lodged up there. When my brother was a toddler he had shoved a wad of toilet paper up his nose. His only symptom was rotten breath. My mom took him to the Dr to pull it out and I hear it was super gross and smelly. His breath cleared up after that. I wouldn't wait too long to have her seen. Hope that helps. Children that age do tend to stick things up their nose. My second child preferred little rocks.

1 mom found this helpful

Most children don't have bad breath until they have a lot of teeth (bacteria, etc.). I would consider a digestive problem. Has your child ever been on antibiotics? When antibiotics are introduced into the colon, it changes the whole system and just because she's no longer taking them doesn't mean she's clear. Systems need to be "neutralized" after antibiotics (sort of like neutralizing your hair after perm chemicals). Your doctor can recommend something like acidopholis that would be appropriate for a young child. If that doesn't apply to your toddler, I would consider a vitamin deficiency. Either way - I'd talk to your doctor or pharmacist.

1 mom found this helpful

You may want to take her to the doctor and make sure she didn't put anything in her nose. Sometimes if a child puts things in the nose it can become infected and rot in there. It will cause the breath to become very smelly. My nephew stuck tissue up his nose and had smelly breath for days before my brother and sister in law realized what he had done. They took him to the doctor and it was removed, they gave him an antibiotic fro teh sinus infestion and all was well. Hope this helps.

1 mom found this helpful

She might have something stuck in her nose. Has she ever stuck anything in her nose that you know of? a friend of mine's son had the same problem and they found out that he had a tiny peice of styrofoam in his nose. I hope thats not the case but I hope it helps.

1 mom found this helpful

Hi - I dealt with this same issue with my now 7 year old last year. I had read somewhere on the net that milk can cause bad breath. He was drinking about 3-5 (what I considered cups, but truly was more than that)glasses of milk a day. I cut him back to one a day and it was a drastic change.

He now drinks no more than 2 actual cups of milk a day and his breath doesn't stink anymore. Before he could brush his teeth and stand by me and I asked him whether or not he had brushed his teeth.

Best wishes!!

1 mom found this helpful

Have her nose checked! My mom tells the story of when I was 3 that my breath started to smell, and it turned out that I had put a bean up my nose! The took me to the doctor, and the nurse showed me what they would have to do to me on my doll.....took out the bean and 30 years later, here I am!!! LOL

1 mom found this helpful

Hi S.,

When my daughter was aroun 9 months she developed very bad breath and she was diagnosed with GERD. Prevacid fixed it and taking her off dairy for a year.
Amy

1 mom found this helpful

my pediatrician told me that cutting teeth can sometimes cause bad breath because i asked about my son's bad breath to considering i use the infants toothpaste twice a day..i think formula and milkl cause bad breath too

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