You might think it natural to have foul smelling gas. While this is true to an extent, certain smells come from more than just the food you’ve eaten. For example, If you’re experiencing a lot of loose and incredibly smelly stool, along with bloating and bad gas, this could be a problem. Generally, these symptoms come from lactose intolerance. Likely, you’ve heard most adults are lactose intolerant. Now, in a healthy system, lactose digestion is facilitated by lactase, produced by the small intestine. However, without enough lactase, the small intestine moves lactose to the colon, and gut bacteria handle it.
While lactose intolerance isn’t a serious concern (and again, is pretty common), the symptoms can be no picnic. Sometimes painful cramps, diarrhea, vomiting, and nausea accompany the smelly waste products. More importantly, however, such smells may result from more serious illnesses. If you’re constantly experiencing problems related to bad gas and other digestive issues, consider seeing a doctor to rule out more serious diseases like Crohn’s. Otherwise, figure out your maximum dairy intake, namely, around 10 grams or 7 ounces per day, or take certain medications to boost your lactase levels and make dairy easier for your body to manage.
While you have probably had a UTI, chances are you wouldn’t associate it with a certain smell so much as burning urination. However, certain urinary infections can, in fact, produce such foul smells. Generally, the odor comes as a result of E.coli in the urinary tract, and then the bladder. While this is typically a more significant problem for women, who have shorter urethras, it is possible for men to get them as well, and they can be transmitted between partners via sexual intercourse. Other symptoms of UTI’s are more obvious, such as the burning or frequent urination and discharge.
While UTIs themselves are usually treatable with antibiotics without too much trouble, do not write them off. They can lead to serious complications if they are left unchecked. For example, they can cause significant bladder and kidney infections, which are much more difficult to treat, and life-threatening as well. They could also be a sign of diabetes (check for fruity breath) or an enlarged prostate. All of these conditions can have a more serious impact on a patient’s life, and may also be more rigorous and financially burdensome in their treatment. See a doctor if you think you have one.
1. Sleep Apnea
It might surprise you that sleep apnea can cause unpleasant odors, especially in the morning. This will be especially noticeable if you practice good dental hygiene and still awaken with terrible morning breath. In this case, the bad breath comes from mouth breathing; sleep apnea can often cause excessive snoring, which means you’ll be breathing in through your mouth when you sleep. When your mouth is open, it dries out very easily, and dry mouth is an easy culprit for bad breath. This is because a dry mouth allows bacteria to breed, and to put it simply- most bacteria stinks.
Related: 8 Medical Problems That Explain Why You Always Feel Tired
There are other causes of bad breath. However, if you are able to clear those and are still dealing with foul morning mouth, check for other signs of sleep apnea. Are you snoring a lot at night? Are you often sleepy during the daytime? Sleep apnea reduces sleep duration and quality because it causes the victim to stop breathing off and on during the night; this leads to constantly waking up in the middle of the night, which results in being tired in the morning. Sleep apnea has been linked to serious conditions such as hypertension, diabetes, and heart disease.
While some of these conditions are much more serious than others, they all can cause health complications. Don’t underestimate your nose as a means to identify potential health problems. If you notice unusual smells coming from your body, and you’re exhibiting other associated symptoms, don’t hesitate. Check with a medical professional as soon as possible in order to rule out serious illnesses- or at least get a handle on them early. In a lot of cases, the sooner you know about even a serious problem, the better the treatment options you have available to help live a long, fulfilling life.